MINERAL WELLS — Mineral Wells investigators are preparing an arson case to be submitted to the Palo Pinto County Attorney's Office following the burning of the old Mineral Wells High School last weekend.
Following up on a tip received, investigators interviewed and have identified three juvenile suspects responsible for setting the fire that demolished the old Fannin school house. Due to the ages of these suspects, ranging from 14 to 15 years, their identities are withheld.
On Nov. 14, at approximate 6:38 p.m., Mineral Wells Fire received a call from a passerby reporting visible fire at the old Mineral Wells High School, located 600 W. Hubbard St., near downtown Mineral Wells. The passerby advised fire was evident on the upper floors of the abandoned school building and flames were beginning to show near the roofline of the structure. Mineral Wells Fire/EMS personnel responded and found volatile fire conditions were present and additional resources were summoned to the scene.
Fire departments from several surrounding agencies responded to assist, as fire teams battled the intense blaze. The fire attack quickly change to a defensive operation, as flames engulfed the century old structure. The fire was finally deemed under control a few hours later, although the structure was deemed a total loss. There were no fatalities or injuries recorded in this fire incident.
An immediate investigation into the cause and origin of the fire was begun after witness accounts reported suspicious activity in and around the structure immediately before the fire was first reported. Arson investigators determined the nature of the fire to be suspicious. In the follow-up investigation, investigators from the Mineral Wells Fire Department, Mineral Wells Police Department, along with technical assistance from the Texas State Fire Marshal’s Office and U.S. Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms Agency, aided in moving the investigation forward.
Investigators are preparing to submit the case for review and prosecution.