Two children charged in Desoto High stadium fire - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Nick Kenney

Two children charged in Desoto High stadium fire

Two children, ages eleven and twelve, are charged in connection with a fire that severely damaged the DeSoto Central High School football stadium.

The yellow crime scene tape is still surrounding the high school stadium. What is behind the tape could change the coming fall drastically. And those accused of causing the damage are not even old enough to go to school there

"We'll formulate a plan to proceed as quickly as possible," Robert Phillips of the DeSoto County School System said.

Phillips will oversee repairs to the stadium. Repairs to damage after a Friday night fire intentionally set.
Someone ignited track equipment under the stadium and the flames torched the bleachers.

There is now a big old hole in the bleachers. But the major concern is the I-beams. Some are warped. And there is more structural damage that will cost quite a bit to fix.

"Knowing the cost of this entire stadium, it could easily be $100,000 to $200,000 right here," Phillips said.

School officials plan to meet with engineers to hammer out a cost estimate and begin repairs. Meanwhile, Southaven police are working the case.

"It makes absolutely no sense whatsoever," Chief Tom Long of the Southaven Police Department said.

Two children, an eleven year old and a twelve year old, have been arrested and charged as "children in need of supervision."  They are in juvenile court custody.

"It's not like they're 16, 17, 18 years old where the police department would charge them. At that age, we're going to get with youth court. We're going to talk to the youth court judge and get some recommendations," Long said.

The football season starts in early September.

"It'll take a miracle to have it ready by then," Phillips said.

Click here to e-mail Nick Kenney.

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