Death of child in Columbia fire ruled accidental
COLUMBIA - Police released the results of an autopsy investigation following the death of a 4-year-old boy in May, ruling the death accidental.
The fire happened on May 26 at a home on Quail Drive. Firefighters found Zadrian Harper in a bedroom; an adult and three other children got out of the home safely. Medics took Harper to a hospital, where he later died.
Investigators determined the fire started in the living room, and was caused by a child playing with a lighter.
No criminal charges will be filed in the case.
In a media release sent Wednesday, the police department said the following: "The death of Harper is a tragedy. Every year nationwide, thousands of fires are started by children playing with fire. According to the National Fire Protection Association, on average this results in 80 deaths and over 800 injuries. The Columbia Fire Department reminds citizens they offer a free, confidential education program for children who show curiosity about fire or who have started a fire."
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