Cigarette blamed for fire that killed two


KIRKSVILLE, Missouri (AP) – A fire that killed two women in a northeast Missouri mobile has been traced to a lit cigarette.

Kirksville firefighters found 78-year-old Bernice Johnson and her 54-year-old daughter, Lynice Newton, dead in the home at Shockey’s Trailer Court on the morning of June 24.

The Kirksville Daily Express reports ( ) an autopsy and toxicology report is now complete, and Kirksville Fire Chief Tom Collins says the fire’s probable cause is listed as mishandling cigarettes. The blaze was ruled accidental.

Functioning smoke and carbon monoxide detectors were sounding inside the trailer when firefighters arrived. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language, racial slurs or consistent name calling will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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