Stayton, Oregon – Witnesses say a child has died in a house fire near Salem. Investigators think the fire was set on purpose. It broke out Friday afternoon in Stayton. News Partner KGW talked to a neighbor who tried to save the child. He says he went in but the smoke was too thick and was falling down on him like rain. He says he made it about halfway down a hallway before he had to turn around and get out because he couldn’t breathe. The fire went to three alarms meaning crews had to call for back up to get it under control.

More pictures courtesy of KXL Listener Mark:

Read more from Oregon State Police 

On February 1, 2019, at approximately 3:00 PM, Oregon State Police and emergency personal were dispatched to a residential fire on Washington Street in Stayton. Once at scene it was determined there was one deceased victim at the scene.

Marion County’s HART Team (Homicide Assault Response Team) was activated to conduct the investigation. Multiple agencies responded to assist including Oregon State Police, Stayton Police Department, Turner Police Department, Marion County Sheriff’s Office, Keizer Police Department and Salem Police Department. Stayton Fire District with the assistance of several local fire agencies suppressed the fire and rendered the scene safe for the investigation.

The media is asked to stage at the Stayton High School ; however there will be no on-camera interviews unless notified. Any further releases will be sent through Flash Alert. Anyone with information is urged to call the Oregon State Police at (800)452-7888 and refer to case number SP19-038138.

No photos are available at this time. No further information is available at this time but any questions should be directed to [email protected]. It is anticipated the next Flash Alert release will be sent out approximately 10:00AM on February 2, 2019.

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