Teen held over family deaths in fire


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The Independent Online

An 18-year-old has been arrested on suspicion of murder following a house fire at the weekend in which four siblings died.

Twins Holly and Ella Smith, aged four, and their two-year-old brother Jordan died after being overcome by smoke as they slept at home in the village of Freckleton, near Preston.

Their brother Reece, 19, died when he tried to rescue the children but was also overcome by smoke.

Yesterday, detectives were questioning a teenager from Lytham, Lancashire, after confirming that the fire started in a wardrobe in the children's bedroom. Police said the suspect was not a family member.

The blaze broke out as partygoers were gathered in the downstairs part of the converted bungalow to celebrate the 36th birthday of Michelle Smith, the mother of the children who died.