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Sat Apr 1, 2017, 12:09 AM

3 arrested in connection with large fire that collapsed portion of Atlanta highway

Three people have been arrested in connection with the large fire that collapsed a portion of an Atlanta highway Thursday, according to fire officials.

The suspects were identified as Basil Eleby, Sophia Broner and Barry Thomas, Georgia Deputy Insurance Commissioner Jay Florence to ABC News. Eleby faces a charge of criminal damage to property, while Broner and Thomas each were charged with criminal trespass. They have not yet entered pleas.

According to Georgia Deputy Insurance Commissioner Jay Florence, the fire was lit using materials that were on site. The Atlanta Fire Department said Eleby is the suspect "we are holding responsible for the fire," according to Sgt. Cortez Stafford, and the department believes the fire was set maliciously.

Eleby remains in custody and additional charges may be pending, according to the fire department. It was not clear if the other two suspects remained in custody. Police records show Eleby has 20 arrests dating back to 2000, mostly for possessing and selling drugs and assault.

Read more: http://abcnews.go.com/US/arrested-connection-large-fire-collapsed-portion-atlanta-highway/story?id=46489131

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Reply 3 arrested in connection with large fire that collapsed portion of Atlanta highway (Original post)
TexasTowelie Apr 2017 OP
CottonBear Apr 2017 #1
CurtEastPoint Apr 2017 #2
CottonBear Apr 2017 #3

Response to TexasTowelie (Original post)

Sat Apr 1, 2017, 05:00 AM

1. GA DOT stored the huge amount of plastic material under the overpass.

The massive fire wouldn't have occurred if the GA DOT had not used the area under the overpass as a long-term storage facility.

That's just my opinion as a Georgia resident who frequently drives on the interstates around Atlanta.

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Response to CottonBear (Reply #1)

Sat Apr 1, 2017, 08:05 AM

2. Bingo. Were these homeless people trespassing? Probably. But they're scapegoats for the

DOT's incompetence.

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Response to CurtEastPoint (Reply #2)

Sat Apr 1, 2017, 11:17 PM

3. Exactly my point, CurtEastPoint.

All the news is about the homeless guy with a criminal history.

Like you said: the story should be about the DOT's incompetence. The GA DOT improperly stored construction materials under an interstate overpass AND failed to secure and monitor the site in the public right-of-way of one of the nation's busiest and most crowded interstate highways in the middle of the region's largest city.

I worked in the civil engineering field in Georgia for over 22 years. I am very familiar with the GA DOT's design, permitting, and construction processes and requirements.

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