Disclaimer: All persons are presumed innocent until proven guilty.
COVINGTON, La. (WGNO) — The Covington Fire Marshal’s Office has arrested two teens who are accused of setting a fire over the weekend at a Walmart store.
On Sunday, June 4, firefighters with St. Tammany Fire District #12 responded to a call around 8:15 p.m. about a fire inside the store on North Highway 190. By the time they arrived, the flames had consumed an aisle of automotive products.
The store was operating with about 200 customers inside. Everyone was evacuated with no reported injuries.
One witness told WGNO a teenager had a lighter in the automotive section, which they believe caused the fire.
Check out video footage from the scene:
After reviewing surveillance footage, investigators say the fire was intentionally set by two teens.
The 17-year-old and 15-year-old boys, both from Covington, were arrested by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office on Monday, June 5 around 7:30 p.m.
Both teens face charges of aggravated arson, conspiracy to commit aggravated arson and manufacture and possession of a delayed action incendiary device.
“We are grateful that the Northshore community stood up for itself today and made a stance against arson,” said State Fire Marshal Chief Dan Wallis. “While it is very unfortunate two young people have been arrested in this case, I am hopeful that this situation encourages all adults to remind children and teens that fire is not a toy. Fire is very dangerous and can change lives in an instant, just like in this case.”
There is no word on when the store will reopen.
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