Causes determined in fire and chief’s death

Updated: Dec. 9, 2019 at 4:01 PM EST
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WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWNY) - The fire where West Stockholm Fire Chief Robert White died was caused by a mattress fire that rekindled at 414 Route 11B.

Sheriff's Detective Thomas Caringi said investigators found the mattress fire was started with a lighter by a 10 year-old boy who lived there.

His mother thought she had the fire extinguished and dragged the mattress to the back porch. But it rekindled after they left the home.

The fire has been ruled accidental and no charges will be filed.

“There's no intent by the juvenile to actually set the fire and do damage to the property. So there's no correlation to make charges and petition him into family court at this time,” said Detective Caringi.

Investigators also determined White rushed to the scene from his home just a few doors down after getting the call. He called 911 and collapsed shortly after.

The coroner has ruled his death to be from natural causes.

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