A turned over lit candle may have caused a house fire south of Rockwood earlier this month that left a Kingston man dead. Roane County Sheriff Jack Stockton said it appears the March 16 fire at the 1147 Mountain View Road home where Jonathan Pesterfield perished appears to be accidental.
Stockton said the story given by 27-year-old Lydia Vasquez and 28-year-old Joshua Cody Walker to detectives cleared up what happened.
“Their stories matched up,” Stockton said.
Stockton said the trio were at the vacant home to do drugs and used candles to light up the trailer that had no eletricity running into the residence. Stockton added its possible a lit candle could have caught a blanket on fire resulting in the blaze.
Stockton said they were hiding because they heard someone outside and assumed it was law enforcement. They did not know they had knocked the candle over. Stockton said Vasquez and Walker were fortunate to have escaped themselves.
Officers say Vasquez was first accused of filing a false report last week and Walker was in custody on an unrelated charge. He now is also charged with filing a false report. Stockton said they will be appearing in Roane County Criminal Court tomorrow (Friday).
No other charges have been ordered at this time.