8th Grader Accused Of Trying To Kill Own Family

Tuesday's Arrest Ends Five-Month Arson Investigation

Jefferson County sheriff's deputies have arrested a 13-year-old girl in connection with an arson case that began five months ago.

The girl is accused of attempting to kill her own family.

7NEWS is not using the girl's name or her family's name in order to protect the teen's identity.

The case began April 21 on Myers Gulch Road with a grass fire near a rented home the family lived in.

The next day, firefighters returned for a fire on a back deck, near a couch, then responded a second time for a fire in a bedroom that destroyed the home.

"So we had three incidents in a very short period of time," said Jacki Kelley, sheriff's office spokeswoman.

For months, the case centered on a 17-year-old boy, one of five children living in the family home, Kelley said.

But on Sept. 9, another grass fire near the family's new home in the Indian Hills subdivision drew immediate concern from deputies.

While the home was not damaged, investigators were ready to switch focus to a 13-year-old girl.

"It's been real hard. I had my suspicions," said Brad, the suspect's father. "I'm just having a hard time with attempted murder."

His daughter now faces investigation for six counts of first-degree attempted murder, plus other felony counts of arson, criminal mischief and intentionally setting a wildland fire.

"I don't think it's as severe as they think," Brad said.

When asked if he still defended his daughter he said, "yes."

"She just needs help. I know she wasn't trying to murder us," Brad said.

The teen is now being held without bond at the Mount View Youth Services Center in Jefferson County and will be tried in juvenile court, a spokeswoman for the district attorney's office said.

On Monday, prosecutors will officially charge the 13-year-old in court.

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