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Police log

February 04, 2004

No cause yet in W.Va. house fire

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - A firefighter said investigators have not yet determined what caused a fire in a two-story home on Legendary Drive outside Martinsburg on Monday night.

Volunteers were on the scene for around five hours.

Steven Gray, a firefighter with Bedington Volunteer Fire Department, said the house was engulfed in flames when firefighters arrived around 7 p.m. A neighbor reported the fire, he said.

Nobody was injured, and Gray said he does not believe any pets were inside the house, which was heavily damaged.

It took firefighters half an hour to get the blaze under control. Later, firefighters had to return after the fire rekindled.

The preliminary damage estimate is $50,000 to $60,000. The fire is under investigation, Gray said.

Because of the house's "balloon construction," flames spread more easily from room to room, Gray said. Balloon construction, found in older homes, means air pockets are in place between walls.


Firefighters with Bedington, Baker Heights, Hedgesville, W.Va., and Shepherdstown, W.Va., volunteer fire departments responded, along with a Berkeley County firetruck.

Legendary Drive is off Eagle School Road. As they were on the scene, firefighters asked the Division of Highways to put salt down on the narrow, dirt road, which was covered in ice.

- Candice Bosely

Guns, GMC Yukon reported stolen

The following crimes were reported to the Washington County Sheriff's Department:

  • Two guns were reported missing Saturday from the 14000 block of Macafee Road in Cascade, according to Washington County Sheriff's Department Sgt. Mark Knight.

    No value was listed for the guns.

  • A 2004 Silver GMC Yukon was reported stolen Monday at 3:30 p.m. from Sharrett Inc. at 10312 Auto Place in Hagerstown, Knight said.

    He said the vehicle was noticed missing during an inventory and employees told police it might have been taken between Jan 20 and Feb 2.

    Knight said the vehicle is valued at $52,000.

  • A back door was kicked in and a VCR was reported stolen Saturday at 1:30 p.m. from the 8000 block of Dam No. 4 Road in Downsville, Knight said.

    He said there was $50 damage to the door and the VCR was valued at $80.

  • Money was reported stolen Sunday at 8 a.m. from the 1000 block of Howell Road off Dual Highway, Knight said. He said $180 was taken.

  • A stereo and six compact discs were reported stolen Sunday at about 12:30 p.m. from a Chevrolet Cavalier parked at Elwood's Auto Exchange at 21409 Jefferson Blvd., Knight said.

  • A Toyota Camry was reported broken into and a Kenwood CD player was reported stolen Monday at 3 p.m. from 18714 North Village near Maugansville Road and Longmeadow Road, Knight said.

    He said the stereo was valued at $200.

    Motorists avoid injury in Interstate 81 crash

    HALFWAY - Northbound Interstate 81 was closed for about five minutes Tuesday night after a Greencastle, Pa., woman's car hit a patch of ice coming off an interstate ramp, Maryland State Police Trooper 1st Class David Matthews said.

    The driver and two passengers were not injured, Matthews said.

    The accident was reported at 8:35 p.m. after the Ford Explorer, heading from Halfway Boulevard to I-81, hit the ice and spun across the interstate into the guard rail, Matthews said.

    The driver was not cited, Matthews said.

    The sport utility vehicle's steering rod was broken in the accident, he said.

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