Teens set fire to two homes in flooded mobile home park, fire department says

BELLEVUE, NE (WOWT) — Bellevue Fire Department said Monday that two teens are suspected of setting a fire at Paradise Lakes in December that consumed two homes abandoned after area floods pushed out residents of the mobile home park earlier in the year.

A Nebraska fire marshal investigation has found two teenagers responsible for intentionally starting a fire at Paradise Lakes in early December, destroying two homes, Bellevue Fire told 6 News on Monday afternoon.

City officials told 6 News previously that they believed vandals likely set the fires in the two homes.

It’s not a surprise to Cathy Yost, who lives nearby.

“There’s young’n’s going down there, because you know they’re teenagers . . . starting fires.”

Yost thinks the City of Bellevue is taking too long to get the contaminated homes torn down.

“Oh, the smells, oh my God, when the wind hits a certain way . . . yeah they just need to get rid of it,” said Yost.

She and her neighbors are concerned about their health and other people’s.

“That thing was totally flooded with all the sewage and waste. It wasn’t just water and you know we worry about all that,” said Yost.

After the fire in December the city said it would start tearing the homes down in early January if nobody else stepped up to do it. But on Monday Bellevue Mayor Rusty Hike, said he wants to give it a bit more time, if necessary.

“We want to work it out with someone who will assume the responsibility and put their own residential development in there,’ said Mayor Hike, noting there is a potential buyer for the property who would take on the cost of the demolition.

“I know the owner has a buyer and they’re talking about it,” said the mayor. “They’ve talked to the city and it’s a good company.”

But the mayor said there’s a limit to how long the city will wait before taking action.

“if a couple of months go by that’s a different story we’ll have to do something,” said Mayor Hike.

The mayor also noted, they have a contractor ready to go, if it comes down to the city tearing down the approximately 200 homes.