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Inmates arrested for fire at at Washington Parish Jail

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Posted at 4:17 PM, Jul 25, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-25 17:17:37-04

Two inmates of the Washington Parish Jail have been re-booked into the facility for allegedly setting a fire that led to the evacuation of dozens of inmates and staff.

According to the State Fire Marshal's Office, 18-year-old Levi Lee and 32-year-old Medel Morales-Guzman are each facing one count of Aggravated Arson and one count of Fire-raising in a Correctional Facility.

Each was already facing other criminal charges. Lee is awaiting trial for First Degree Murder, Attempted First Degree Murder, and two counts of Armed Robbery. Morales-Guzman is awaiting trial for Sexual Battery.

Officials say that just before midnight on July 21, jail staff noticed smoke inside one of the facility's cell blocks. While the Franklinton Fire Department worked to locate the source of the smoke, the cell block's 34 occupants were evacuated. Additional areas were later evacuated as smoke spread.

Almost 175 occupants inside the entire jail facility at the time of the fire.

Investigators were able to narrow down the origin of the fire to the cell block's air conditioning unit. It was later determined through surveillance video that the A/C fire was intentionally set by Lee and Morales-Guzman according to the State Fire Marshal's Office.

Both were re-booked into the jail on the new charges on Thursday, July 25.