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Jul 28, 2021

Arson on Antelope Street; Husband & Wife Survive

There is yet another fire to report tonight; this time in the Antelope Street area of Belize City. A well-known yardman and his wife escaped grave injury when a fire broke inside their wooden home early this morning. Investigations indicate it may have been deliberately set. News Five’s Duane Moody reports. 


Duane Moody, Reporting

Today, smouldering debris is all that is left of an elevated wooden structure at #163 Antelope Street Extension. It was home for over two decades for Fitzroy Myles Senior and his wife, Dorva and their children. Around one-thirty this morning, the couple was awakened by the smell of smoke.


Fitzroy Myles Sr., Fire Victim

“I get up and see the house; dah mi wah small lee blaze and I goen and try get a lee bucket a water fi out it, but by the time I reach dah di bathroom and come back, dah because the thing done deh…you know. I mi di try fi out it and couldn’t deal with it and I end up get my hand messed up.”


Fire-fighters were called in. Station Officer Kenneth Mortis describes the scene as a fourth of July fireworks celebration.


Kenneth Mortis, Station Officer, National Fire Service

“On arrival, we observed what was an elevated wooden bungalow structure fully engulfed in flames, in all its glory. By that I mean, electrical wires sparking, exploded butane tanks – just kicking off a fourth of July on the twenty-eight of July. We tried our best to contain the fire to the one structure. I am sure you have seen the area; the footage would show the heavy congestion we were up against. We had a seven-man crew and I must recognise the efforts of my firemen at that fire scene this morning. Had we not effectively deployed our fire-fighting tactics, we could have lost anywhere between two to three houses or maybe a block.”


Kenneth Mortis

An investigation has since revealed that the fire was deliberately set by use of an accelerant that was detected by personnel from the National Fire Service.


Kenneth Mortis

“The fire department has reasons to believe that this fire was set intentionally by person or persons unknown. We’ve done our research and homework and we learnt that the family was targeted days before, leading up to the fire. However, the million-dollar question still remains as to who and why. We detected a vague scent. Because it was a minimal smell that we detected, the traces were found at the rear of the building. We believe that that was the cause of the fire. Bear in mind, you might say but then doesn’t a weed eater have fuel as well. That scent that I picked up this morning and what we observed was straight accelerant. Everybody who knows weed eater, knows that that is a fuel mixed with oil and that wasn’t what we detected this morning at the fire scene.”


The Myles were not able to save anything and their life’s work went up in flames. Fitzroy Senior received injuries to his hands as he initially tried to out the fire.


Fitzroy Myles Sr.

Kenneth Mortis

“What he would consider his storeroom, so to speak, where his weed eater and other machines were located, the fire was concentrated there. In his attempt to try and salvage something from the burn, Mister Myles sustained superficial burns to the palm.”


Fitzroy Myles Sr.

“We noh save nothing, everything burn right up in there. All my clothes, everything. Nothing.”


Duane Moody

“How long unu di live yah?”


Fitzroy Myles Sr.

“More than twenty years. My oldest bwai done gwen fi twenty-one twenty-two and before he born we live yah.”


The house was not insured and estimated cost of damages is yet to be ascertained. Duane Moody for News Five.


Anyone wanting to assist the Myles family to recover all that has been lost can contact the family at cell phone numbers: 610-4134 or 669-9157.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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