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LEETONIA Officials continue investigation



Published: Thu, July 25, 2002 @ 12:00 a.m.



LEETONIA -- After nearly a week of investigation, police and fire officials have little information about the firebombing of a Leetonia residence.

Police Chief John Soldano said he and his officers are "pounding the pavement and shaking the bushes" for clues as to why someone threw a glass bottle containing a flammable liquid through the dining room window of the home of John and Shirley Hearn at 541 Butcher Road.

Soldano said the firebombing early Friday is still on everyone's mind in this town of about 2,000.

"Something like this just never happens here," Soldano said. "Everyone wants to know why this happened, and many people are scared."

Fire Chief Ken Garlough said he's investigated many house fires in his 30 years in the department, but this was the first one caused by a firebombing.

He said Columbiana County fire investigators, a group of county firefighters trained in arson investigation, are working with police.

Garlough said officials are still assessing the damage to the home.

Fire officials said the fire burned the dining-room wall, carpeting, curtains and furniture.

They said the Hearns were awakened by smoke detectors, and John Hearn was able to put out the fire with a garden hose.




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