By RYAN SCOTT OTTNEY
PDT Staff Writer
OAK HILL —The Ohio State Fire Marshal has posted a Blue Ribbon Arson Reward up to $5,000 for information leading to the identification of the person or persons responsible for a fire in Oak Hill last summer. Additionally, a privately-funded reward of up to $5,000 is also being offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction.
According to Shane Cartmill, spokesperson for the Division of State Fire Marshal, the fire occurred at 12:43 a.m., at a single-family home located 946 Tommy Been Road in Oak Hill, on July 20, 2011. The fire started in a den or family room at the rear of the home, and Tom Campbell, age 80, died in the fire. A dog also perished in the fire, and the home was completely destroyed.
Smoke alarms were present but it is unknown if they activated. Firefighters tell investigators they did not hear the alarms alerting upon arrival.
Specific information about the cause of the fire will not be released at this time — but investigators are saying that the fire may have been the result of arson, and they are asking anyone with information about the case to call the Division of State Fire Marshal at 1-800-589-2728.
They believe someone from the nearby campground or passers-by may have seen something during the early stages of the fire. They also want to hear from citizens who may have heard someone speaking about the fire with an unusual level of interest or knowledge. No tip should be considered insignificant.
The investigation is being conducted by the Division of State Fire Marshal, the Bureau of Criminal Identification, the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office, the Oak Hill Police Department and the Madison-Jefferson Fire Department.
Ryan Scott Ottney can be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 235, or firstname.lastname@example.org.