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Fire was started by home invasion suspects after robbery

12:20 PM, Mar 5, 2013   |    comments
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Investigators with the Knox County Sheriff's Office now say a fire that destroyed a mobile home over the weekend was deliberately set by two men who broke into and robbed the home owner.

The fire happened Sunday evening at a home on Yarnell Road in West Knoxville. 

Donald Thomas told investigators that two man came through the back door of his home.  They pushed him down on the couch and demanded money. After taking cash and a jewelry box, Thomas said the men poured gasoline around the living room and kitchen and set it on fire.

The two men fled.  Thomas was able to escape the fire, but was transported to the hospital to be treated for smoke inhalation.

One suspect is described as a male, approximately 5'3"-5'4", 200-230 pounds, with a heavy build, wearing a black shirt, blue pants, and a ski mask.  The other suspect is a male, approximately 5'09"-5'10", 135-140 pounds, with a medium build, wearing a multi-colored shirt, blue jeans, and a ski mask. The race and age of both suspects are unknown.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Tim Atchley with the KCSO Major Crimes Unit at (865) 215-2243.

Previous story

A fire completely destroyed a West Knoxville mobile home and sent one person to the hospital Sunday night.

Firefighters said the residence located on Yarnell Road is a complete loss. They responded to the fire at approximately 7:30 p.m. Still, crews were able to rescue a cat from the burning home.

An ambulance transported one person to the hospital for smoke inhalation. Right now, officials don't know what sparked the fire or whether foul play was involved.

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