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#401237 - 02/27/11 04:16 PM Fire at the Government Youth Hostel, girls dorm
Marty Online   happy
The girls' dorm at the government Youth Hostel at Miles 21 on the Western Highway went up in flames on Saturday night. Fire broke out after 6 pm Belize time and by 9 PM, the structure was completely gutted. Initial reports are that it is a case of arson and an investigation has begun.

This is amateur video that was taken on the night of February 26 in Gracie Rock Village. The girls dorm at the government's Youth Hostel went up in flames. There are reports that it was arson.


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#401401 - 03/01/11 03:19 PM Re: Fire at the Government Youth Hostel, girls dorm [Re: Marty]
Marty Online   happy

Hostel girls burn the roof over their heads

A fire at the Belize Youth Hostel at mile twenty-one on the Western Highway late Saturday evening totally destroyed the female dorm of the facility. One of the employees, Mary Rivera, told police that she was supervising the group of girls when she smelled smoke. When she checked the building she detected fire coming from the attic in the bathroom. Although attempts were made to extinguish the blaze, it was too late and everything was lost. Worst yet, one of the girls has reportedly confessed to starting the fire. Marion Ali reports.

Marion Ali, Reporting

You might remember the ceremony back in April of 2007 when the newly renovated dormitories at the Belize Youth Hostel were opened after a two hundred thousand-dollar investment.

This is how the girls’ dorm looks today after a fire left the seventeen teenaged residents displaced after it totally destroyed their living quarters and all its contents. The blaze erupted shortly after six on Saturday evening and police are looking at the possibility that it might have been the result of a conspiracy among a group of the female residents smoking marijuana in the bathroom. But fire officials have not concluded their investigations and all that they can confirm is that the fire started in that location. Director of the Community Rehabilitation Department, Starla Bradley-Acosta, says at present the girls are staying at a nearby compound.

Starla Bradley-Acosta

Starla Bradley-Acosta, Dir., Community Rehabilitation Dept.

“For right now we are thankful for our neighbors, the National Youth Cadet Corp, they are assisting us with one of their buildings and so the girls are placed there for the interim period. We are in the process of looking at rebuilding the facility. We’re still not quite sure what caused the fire and we are still waiting for the fire department to complete their investigation and submit their final report.”

But the police report issued today states that it was one of the girls who placed a bed sheet in the man hole of the attic and lit it, and that a fifteen year-old has since confessed to setting the building on fire. An act of arson, even by a minor, could mean many years in lockdown.

Starla Bradley-Acosta

“If it was arson, we plan to hand it over to the police so that the matter can be dealt with to the fullest extent.”

Marion Ali

“So one of the girls could be charged?”

Starla Bradley-Acosta

“Quite possibly, if that is the case. If it is ruled arson, then the police will do their investigation. Whenever anyone commits an offence, they have to be held accountable and this is a serious, serious, serious matter that we are not taking lightly at all. It’s just by mother nature’s doing that the male dormitory as you can see which is very near wasn’t engulfed as well because had the wind be blowing in the other direction, I don’t think we would have the male dorm either. But thankfully, no one was hurt. All seventeen female residents and the supervisor who were with them got out safely. They weren’t able to safe much of anything, but like I said, we are thankful that no one was hurt.”

While the female residents and their supervisor escaped unscathed, the future of the facility looks promising because the Inter-American Development Bank recently granted new funding for more infrastructure at the compound.

Starla Bradley-Acosta

“We will be replacing this dormitory and for now, the girls are staying over at the cadet just during the night time and then they come back over and we will look at a temporary structure over here very soon.”

Marion Ali

“Are there enough beds, stoves, appliances?”

Starla Bradley-Acosta

“Our ministry was able to mobilize beds yesterday so we have enough beds, but at this point—well they are cots really—we will have to replace the actually bunk beds and mattresses. The girls were able to only escape with just the clothing that they were wearing so we will have to find clothing for them and some of the equipment and stuff will have to be replaced, certainly.”

The investigations to determine the exact cause of the blaze are expected to be completed by Tuesday evening. Reporting for News Five, I am Marion Ali.


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#401402 - 03/01/11 03:20 PM Re: Fire at the Government Youth Hostel, girls dorm [Re: Marty]
Marty Online   happy

Police: Girls Burnt Down Their Own Dorm

On Saturday night, the children at the Youth Hostel at mile 21 on the Western Highway were put in grave danger when the building caught on fire.

Well, according to police, it didn't catch on fire, it was set on fire - and, most shockingly, by three girls who were in custody.

It happened in the female section where 16 girls were being held. But, according to police, 3 of those girls were up to no good. Monica Bodden has more:….

Monica Bodden Reporting
In 2007 the female dormitory at the Youth Hostel was renovated,With a lounge area including sofas - and extended bedrooms - It was home sweet home for these young women.

But on Saturday evening - all that was destroyed - in the blink of an eye.

The entire concrete one story building was engulfed in flames.

It took almost 6 hours before fire fighters managed to control the blaze.It happened about 6:30 on Saturday evening.

Starla Bradley Acosta - Director -Youth Hostel
"The fire started at around 6 pm or a little there after on Saturday evening. The chief supervisor of the youth hostel call me to state that the female dormitory was on fire and that they had already call the police and the fire department. By the time we got up here a little after 7 pm the entire building was completely engulf in flames already."

According to Acosta, by the time the fire department arrived, it was already too late….

Starla Bradley Acosta
"By the time the fire service got here they realize that they didn't have enough to manage the fire. So I think they call in a second truck, what apparently was explain to us is that one truck only holds 500 gallons of water and by the time they reach the building was already fully ablaze."

17 residents along with their supervisor were inside the building at the time of the fire.

The fire is believed to have been started from the girl's bathroom.

Starla Bradley Acosta
"From what we know the fire started in the girls' bathroom. 17 female residents along with their supervisor was in the building at the time, they all escape unharmed thankfully, because of the proximity of the two dormitories - the make dormitory is right next door, we are just thankful that the breeze was blowing in the other direction. Had it been blowing this way - the male dormitory probably would have been in trouble as well."

Today Acosta told us they are many speculations going around on what may have been the cause of the fire.

Starla Bradley Acosta
"There is a lot of speculation right now. we are still working with the fire department, they are still conducting their investigation and if it is found to be arson, our ministry plans to hand it over completely to the police so that action can be taken. Slowly we are getting bits and pieces of information, but when you are dealing with the population that we deal with, it will take some time to really iron out what exactly happen."

According to Police, 4 girls were in the bathroom of the female dorm smoking marijuana when they conspired to set the building on fire. One of the girls apparently placed a bed sheet in the man hole of the attic and lit it.

A disturbing act of delinquency and arson, but police say a 15-year old female minor has confessed to it.

Police investigators and members of the Fire Department are investigating the possible case of arson.

And for the meantime, the youth cadet corp which is right across the street from the Youth Hostel - has temporarily opened up one of their buildings to house the 17 residents.

Starla Bradley Acosta
"Yesterday we spent the entire day just looking after their safety, because we have to relocate them, making sure that they are safe and trying to find beds and supplies for them. Today we have our counseling team and they are doing debriefing sessions with both male and female residents because this of course was a traumatic experience. The girls are now more displace and the whole fear of the situation. So right now we are just looking after the safety and mental health of our residents while we look at interim plans, where we will house them because we will have to replace this dorm."

Despite numerous attempts, we were unable to get any comment form the fire department.

Police and fire investigators are investigating it as a case of arson.

Channel 7


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#401691 - 03/04/11 03:57 PM Re: Fire at the Government Youth Hostel, girls dorm [Re: Marty]
Marty Online   happy

Teen admitted she set Hostel ablaze, Fire Service agrees it’s arson

The findings of investigations into Saturday evening’s fire at the girls’ dorm of the Youth Hostel in Rockville at Mile twenty-one on the Western Highway confirm that it was a case of arson. The dorm was home to seventeen girls, four of whom were smoking marijuana in a bathroom when the fire started. The Operations Officer at the National Fire Service, Michael Middleton, told News Five that the blaze was indeed deliberately set.

Michael Middleton, Operations Officer, National Fire Service

“We found out that this fire was intentionally set by some one of the girls at the Youth Hostel up there at mile twenty one.”

Marion Ali

Michael Middleton

“And it was set how?”

Michael Middleton

“Whoever did it, they lit a sheet, put it in the roof of the bathroom, the attic, and that is where the fire started and spread throughout the building. From the statement that they gave us it was actually to burn down the place.”

The police issued a release stating that one of the girls confessed to starting the fire, but so far, no charges have been filed against any of the teens. Fire officials, meanwhile, say that the investigations into the fire on Jane Usher Boulevard on Tuesday morning are inconclusive.

Channel 5


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#401726 - 03/04/11 07:45 PM Re: Fire at the Government Youth Hostel, girls dorm [Re: Marty]
Amanda Syme Offline
Unfortunately most of these youths are troubled teens.

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