MADISON, Wis. - The Madison Police Department has arrested four juveniles on suspicion that they started a fire at a playground this month.
Police said they have arrested three 13-year-olds and a 12-year-old, all from Madison, in connection with the June 7 fire on the playground at Odana Hills Park.
Police said witnesses led them to focus on potential suspects seen in the area within minutes of the fire starting.
Investigators determined the motive for the fire was to "burn school supplies." The juveniles used lighters to burn their personal items on the playground. The fire spread to the playground structure, causing an estimated $100,000 in damage.
The juveniles are facing charges of negligent handling of burning materials.
June 7, 2017
A large plume of black smoke seen on the west side Wednesday afternoon was caused by a fire at a playground, Madison fire officials said.
Multiple people called Dane County dispatch around 3:30 p.m. reporting a large amount of black smoke in the area of Milward Drive.
Officials said crews arrived at a playground behind 5201 Milward Drive to find a playground structure fully engulfed in flames at Odana Hills Park.
MFD officials said most of the fire crews were sent back to their stations because the fire was not threatening any other structures.
Rubber pellets under the playground equipment caught fire, creating plumes of thick dark smoke, officials said.
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