Former Iowa firefighter arrested for blaze at station

Published 8:20 pm Friday, March 15, 2024

Special to the American Press

State Fire Marshal Chief Bryan J Adams has announced the arrest of a former part-time firefighter for an overnight blaze at his department’s main station in Iowa, La.

Jamison Smith, 18, has been booked into the Calcasieu Parish Correctional Center on one count of Simple Arson.

Email newsletter signup

Just before 4 a.m. on Friday, smoke and flames were reported at the Iowa Volunteer Fire Department’s main station located in the 100 block of Thompson Street. The station was unmanned at the time and used to house a fire truck and miscellaneous equipment. Dozens of volunteers responded from their homes to find their firehouse fully involved.

Due to the circumstances surrounding the fire, State Fire Marshal deputies were contacted to investigate.

Following an assessment of the scene and evidence collection, deputies determined the fire was intentionally set.  They quickly identified Smith, a part-time firefighter who had been with the department six months in that role, and a year prior as a volunteer, who also responded to this fire, as a suspect in the case.

A warrant was obtained for his arrest and he was quickly taken into custody.

Following an interview with deputies, he was booked in connection to the case. In addition, he is being relieved of his duty with the department.

“This is an unfortunate situation that should not reflect poorly on this department or their dedicated service to their community,” said Adams, “Louisiana’s Fire Service is made up of thousands of heroes, the majority of them volunteers, who sacrifice their time and safety to protect their communities. That is who families across this state can continue to be confident in and rely on when they call for help.”