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house fire

BREAKING: 9-year-old charged with first-degree murder in house fire that killed three toddlers

A 9-year-old child is accused of intentionally setting a house fire in Illinois that killed five people, including three children 2 years old or younger.

The Peoria Journal-Star reports that the unidentified minor has been charged with five counts of first-degree murder following April’s fatal house fire in Gooding.

The April 6 fire at Timberline Mobile Home Park killed two adults and three children. The Pantagraph identified the victims as Kathryn Murray, 69; Jason Wall, 34; Damien Wall, 2; Rose Alwood, 2; and Ariel Wall, 1.

In addition to the murder charges, the juvenile suspect is facing two counts of arson and one count of aggravated arson. Authorities have not released the child’s name, gender, or any relationship to the victims.

Woodford County State’s Attorney Greg Minger told the Pantagraph that the juvenile suspect is not in custody as of Tuesday, and did not provide any further details about the child’s location.

“It is a little bit different than with an adult case because the proceedings will be closed,” Minger said.

“Many of the elements are the same, but we are unable to give specifics, as we might be able to do in a similar situation with an adult.”

This is a developing story. CrimeOnline will provide further updates when more information is available.

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