Saturday, April 07, 2001

Deputy rescues man; house blaze was arson

By David Eck
Enquirer Contributor

        COLERAIN TWP. — Fire investigators say an early-morning fire Friday — from which a Hamilton County sheriff's deputy rescued a sleeping teen-ager — was deliberately set.

        There were no injuries in the 1:19 a.m. fire. Deputy Peter Enderle kicked in a door, roused Kelsey Taylor, 18, and escorted him to safety. Mr. Taylor, the only person in the home in the 2500 block of Retford Drive, was sleeping in a front bedroom when the deputy woke him up, sheriff's officials said.

        “It could very easily have been a tragedy,” township Fire Chief Bruce Smith said. “He was responsible for getting the person out. He got there before we did.”

        Neither Mr. Taylor nor Deputy Enderle could be reached for comment Friday. Deputy Enderle has been with the sheriff's office since 1996, officials said.

        Investigators said a fire was set in the bed of a small Nissan pickup backed up to the home. The fire spread to the roof and attic of the ranch house.

        Colerain Township Fire Lt. Hollis Love would not comment on the type of material found in the back of the truck. No one has been arrested and there are no suspects.

        The investigation is being handled by the Colerain department and the Hamilton County Sheriff's Office.

        Firefighters were able to contain the fire, but the damage estimate was $60,000, Chief Smith said.

        Fairfield firefighters assisted Colerain crews. Firefighters were on the scene about 90 minutes.

        A reward of up to $5,000 has been offered for any information leading to an arrest and conviction in Friday's fire. Anyone with information should call the Hamilton County Sheriff's Office at 825-1500.


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