Tampa Fire Arson Investigators and Tampa Police Detectives Make Arrest in Overnight Fire

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Incident Date/Time: 2/2/2014 at 10:19 PM

Location: Mar Plaza apartments, 4817 East Temple Heights Road Building #B

Suspect: Kenneth Haskins, DOB: 08/17/55, resides in unit 201 at Mar Plaza apartments.

The defendant resides in the apartment where the fire originated. Tampa Fire Arson Investigators determined that there were two areas that caught fire within the apartmentthe kitchen and the bedroom. During a thorough investigation to determine the cause of the fire, the suspect made statements to the investigators that he was upset with the management company. Investigators charged the suspect with arson based on these statements along with evidence at the scene. There were no injuries as a result of this fire and four families were displaced due to fire and water damage. The American Red Cross is providing temporary shelter for these families.

Janelle McGregor


February 2, 2014 at 2210 hrs. Tampa Fire Rescue crews were dispatched to a reported structure fire at the Mar Plaza Apartments located at 4817 E. Temple Heights Rd. Crews arrived quickly to find Mar Plaza, a 2-story elderly affordable living complex with heavy smoke coming from an upstairs unit in Building B. As firefighters made an interior attack on the single unit involved in fire, other TFR crews worked to evacuate tenants of the building with the assistance of TPD officers. A total of 28 apartment units were evacuated. Firefighters were able to bring the fire under control in approximately 20 minutes. The fire was contained to the upstairs apartment unit of origin. That unit sustained significant fire, smoke, and water damage. A neighboring upstairs unit sustained significant smoke damage. Two apartments directly below the fire sustained significant water damage. As a result the American Red Cross is en route to assist the four (4) effected apt's tenants with housing. The remaining 24 units sustained no damage and residents have returned to their homes. There are no reported injuries to residents or firefighters. The cause of the fire remains under investigation by Tampa Fire Marshal investigators. Approximately 40 firefighters responded to the scene of this fire.