Investigation into Westside Drive fire continue
by GREG KAYLOR Banner Staff Writer
Mar 27, 2014 | 936 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Bradley County Fire-Rescue fire and arson investigator Deputy Chief Donnie Sullivan and Chief Troy Maney are continuing an investigation into a structure fire which destroyed a house on Westside Drive.

The fire was reported early Wednesday morning.

A number of people were questioned concerning the circumstances of the fire, which consumed the unoccupied house at 565 Westside Drive.

According to reports, the house had been empty for approximately one year and had also been the site of illegal drug activity.

Sullivan said the property owner had been questioned Wednesday after the fire was discovered and an investigation initiated.

Sullivan and Maney revisited the scene Wednesday afternoon to collect evidence at the site.

Sullivan said today, samples will be sent off for forensic analysis to detect evidence of accelerants.

- Evidence left behind by an alleged burglar was collected at the scene of a theft at a Woolen Street address.

According to a report filed by deputy James Lawson, he spoke with Rachel Skelly, who said someone took a window air-conditioning unit from a vacant residence she owned.

A tool used in the removal was reportedly left behind by the perpetrator.

Lawson noted in his report the evidence was collected and turned over to the Criminal Investigations Division at the Bradley County Sheriff’s Office.

The air conditioner was valued at $300.

- Tennessee Highway Patrol will be conducting Safety Belt Checkpoints in Bradley County beginning Friday.

The checkpoints will be set up in random location in the county. Also, a heavy presence of patrol activity and increased enforcement along the Highway 11 route from Cleveland to Charleston will be noticed by drivers. Bradley County Traffic Unit deputies, along with Tennessee Department of Transportation and Charleston Police have stepped up awareness of the dangers of speeding and driver inattention by placing signs and speed indicator systems in the Highway 11 corridor.

According to THP officials, checkpoints are an effective means of recognizing the dangers presented to the driving public, by motorists who would violate the laws of the state.

All scheduled checkpoints are contingent upon weather conditions and manpower availability.