Cigarette suspected in fataly fire

Posted: Thursday, February 08, 2001

FAIRBANKS (AP) -- A fire that killed an Eagle Village woman Saturday could have been caused by a cigarette, according to the State Fire Marshal's office.

''The house was totally destroyed, so if I had to do the most probable cause, it was probably caused by a smoking fire,'' said Tom DePeter Jr., deputy state fire marshal.

DePeter said the fire that killed 41-year-old Debbie Stevens probably burned for about four hours. The house was found engulfed at 11:30 p.m.

Stevens was found close to the door, indicating that she was trying to get out of the house, ''or we assume she knew about the fire,'' DePeter said.

Stevens, an Eagle Village resident for 20 years, had lived in the three-bedroom house built through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development since its construction three years ago.

Eagle Village is several miles east of Eagle. Both are on the Yukon river.

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