LEWISTON — A Lewiston woman was arrested Monday on a charge of setting a fire at an apartment building at which a later fire left 12 people homeless on New Year’s Day.

Stephen McCausland, spokesman for the Maine State Police, said 33-year-old Jackie McBurnie is being held at Androscoggin County Jail in Auburn on a single charge of arson, a Class A offense.

Investigators allege McBurnie set fire to a kitchen wall in her apartment on Bartlett Street. That fire was extinguished with minor damage. But about 10 hours later, a second fire that started inside her bedroom destroyed the apartment building. McBurnie could face an additional arson count for the second fire, according to McCausland’s news release.

McBurnie had lived in the apartment building for a few months. Prior to that, she had been a tenant at an apartment house at 101 Birch St. in Lewiston. That four-story building was destroyed by a fire in September that left 24 people homeless. Investigators said the Birch Street fire started on an outside deck next to McBurnie’s apartment. She has not been charged in that case.


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