Two kids, 13, charged with murder over arson fire that killed two firefighters

Josh Dutton
News Reporter

Two teens have been charged with murder after allegedly starting a fire that killed two men.

The pair, both 13, allegedly started a fire at the Porterville Library in the US state of California on Tuesday, according to the Tulare County District Attorney's Office.

Two firefighters responded to the blaze but tragically died after becoming trapped in the building.

Porterville Library was destroyed by a fire allegedly started by two teens. Source: Fox 8

Porterville Fire Department identified the two firies as Raymond Figueroa, 35, and Patrick Jones, 25.

The teens have been charged with two counts of murder with special circumstances of multiple murders and arson.

They will face court on March 11.

Tributes for fallen firies

Mr Figueroa had been with the department since 2007, while his younger colleague started in 2017.

The fire department paid tribute to both men on Facebook.

“During his time as a reserve firefighter, Patrick stood out with the passion he brought and the many hours he spent at the fire station,” the firies wrote.

Raymond Figueroa, 35, and Patrick Jones, 25, died while responding to the blaze. Source: Facebook/ Porterville Fire Department

It added the 25-year-old had a “positive attitude” which was “infectious around the fire station”.

Fox 8 reported Mr Jones had recently become engaged.

Mr Figueora was known for his “love of the job” and passion for mentoring his colleagues, the fire station wrote.

“When he came to work his priorities showed, as he was also known for saying ‘My Men, The Mission, Then Me’,” the station wrote. 

“Ray not only served the citizens and community in and around Porterville, he often responded to large wildland fires across California through his career.”

Mr Figueroa’s friend Mistie Webb told KGPE “he died a hero”.

Firies investigate the blaze. Source: Fox 8

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