Fire at Leesville Sparks Investigation

Fire trucks line up outside the Murphy Building in which the fire began and later dissipated. The charred toilet paper roll that caused the fire was recovered soon after. School officials are now left to determine who caused the fire and why. (Photo used by permission of Adam Gee, photo used by permission of Natasha Waithera)

On Monday, November 6, Leesville students were sent out of class for the majority of third period and had lunch  pushed back for a fire evacuation procedure. Standing outside and away from the apparent danger, some noticed smoke billowing out of the Murphy building of the high school.

“I was near the fire when it happened, but we only realized [something was wrong] when the fire alarm went off. The math department actually went down before we did,” said Mrs. Gamble, a teacher substituting for Mrs. Ennis’ Health Science class.


While standing outside, many were left confused as to the severity of the flames and the cause of the fire in the first place. The sight of several fire trucks whirring past the rear parking circle only added to the concern. People soon took to various social media apps and group chats to voice their concerns and theories about the emergency. Some claimed that the entire bathroom was set ablaze, while others wondered if the trash can was also set on fire due to the foul smell in the hallway.

Before the evacuation, the multipurpose hallway in the building was reported to have smelled “off” by many. Further investigation by students and faculty led to the conclusion that the fire began in the men’s bathroom, wherein toilet paper was intentionally lit on fire and left to burn. Though nobody was harmed, the bathroom stalls displayed soot and burn marks.

Intentional disturbances like this are not only costly and disruptive to valuable class time, but also pose a threat to student and faculty safety within Leesville. Any additional information on the fire should be reported to Leesville via phone or email as soon as possible.

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