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Investigators: Arsonist Set NE Columbus House Fire

COLUMBUS (Ken Hines) -- Arson investigators believe a Thursday morning fire at a Northeast Side home was deliberately set.

Karen Murphy and her 9-year-old granddaughter were able to escape the burning Somersworth Drive home without injury after smoke detectors alerted them to the fire at approximately 5 a.m.

Firefighters found flames at the front and back doors of the home upon their arrival, and believe the smoke detectors likely saved the lives of Murphy and the young girl.

"We could have been killed. Both of us could have been deceased today," Murphy said.

Investigators have determined that an arsonist ignited the blaze, and believe the suspect also tried to set fire to an SUV parked in front of the home by stuffing a burning rag in the vehicle's gas tank.

"We literally ran because I just filled my tank up," Murphy said. "I'm thankful we're still here because I'm scared. I don't know who would come and torch my home."

Investigators have not released information about possible suspects or motives related to the fire.
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