Officials looking into suspicious fire

A forensics team is looking into a suspicious fire that occurred Monday night after multiple calls sent officers to the same Ramblewood Road residence earlier that night.

According to an incident report provided by the Aiken County Sheriff’s Office, a call was made Monday at 6:45 p.m. by a victim who said she was moving her stuff, but that the locks had been changed because she was supposed to be out by Nov. 1.

Officers were called to the same residence at 9:15 p.m. Monday by another victim who resided in the home, according to a second incident report.

Upon arrival, the victim told officers that the subject, who is the landlord, said pictures of drugs were taken inside the residence and that the landlord was going to talk to the cops about it, according to the incident report.

The victim then told officers that if he could not get into the residence because of the locked doors, then he needed to file a claim to get his property.

Officers were then called to the same residence at 11:40 p.m. for a fully-involved fire, according to a third incident report.

Upon arrival, officers met with a witness who said he was walking by when he noticed smoke coming from the back of the house, according to the report.

The witness walked to the back and saw the back of the house on fire at which point he ran to the front to knock on the door and try to wake up anyone who might have been inside, according to the report.

The witness then called 911 and noted that no one walked up or exited the house while he waited for the police to arrive, according to the report.

Officers attempted to make contact with the previous tenants of the home, but were unsuccessful.

Capt. Eric Abdullah, with the Sheriff’s Office, said officers are not going to speculate at this time if the fire is a product of arson.

“Right now, we just want to look at the origin of the fire and figure out how it started,” he said. “We have a forensics team looking at it now and we’ll go from there after they’ve made some determinations.”

Derrek Asberry is the SRS beat reporter for the Aiken Standard and has been with the paper since June 2013.