Richmond Elementary School Fire Investigated As Arson - 8NEWS - WRIC | News Where You Live

Richmond Elementary School Fire Investigated As Arson

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RICHMOND, VA—A Sunday afternoon fire that caused an estimated $70,000 in damage to a handicap-accessible playground at a Richmond elementary school is now being investigated as arson.

The fire broke out round 12 p.m. Sunday at a handicap-accessible playground at J.L. Francis Elementary in Richmond.

Fire crews were able to extinguish the fire before it spread to the school, but the flames did damage windows and siding on the building.

The fire caused an estimated $70,000 in the damage, the school said. Investigators say the fire was likely the result of arson.

The playground was less than two years old, Cletisha Lovelace with the Richmond Public Schools said.

The Richmond School System released the following statement: "We are saddened by the loss of the playground at J.L. Francis Elementary School, which served as a fun, safe haven for our students during the school year and beyond. In spite of this unfortunate occurrence, we are committed to making sure our students not only have a wonderful return to school, but also a successful school year. Upon completion of the Richmond Fire Department's investigation, we will begin the process of removing the damaged equipment in order to restore the grounds for our students, staff and community."

Copyright 2013 by Young Broadcasting of Richmond

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