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Published: Tuesday, 3/15/2005

Fatal Frenchtown Township fire likely started by boy

MONROE - Frenchtown Township firefighters are continuing their investigation into an apartment fire that claimed the life of a 2-year-old girl Sunday and critically injured her grandmother.

The fire, which broke out in a second-floor apartment at 11:39 a.m. at the three-story, 54-unit Countryside Apartments at 1515 Stewart Rd., caused about $200,000 to the building, authorities said.

Investigators said the fire may have started in a bedroom closet, likely by a 4-year-old boy playing with a lighter.

Andrea Miller died in the fire. Her grandmother, Robin Robish, 46, was in critical condition last night in Toledo Hospital. The boy, Jacob Miller, was treated in Mercy Memorial Hospital in Monroe.

Frenchtown Township fire Chief Ron Whipple said he is waiting to interview Ms. Robish and Jacob before he makes a final determination of the fire's cause.

Two other apartments in the complex suffered serious smoke and water damage and their occupants were moved yesterday, the chief said.

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