2) Allof the witness statementsand otherevidence in theeaseindicates thatthefire
began in apartment#6, which is where Sandra Walkerlived andwas located on the
second f loor of 88 HighStreetdown the hall f rom theHina family.Within minutes
of the tire,residents and visitorsat 88 HighStreet were gathered outside the building.
DonAbrams,a visitor at 88High Street, or one of the other residents,asked Walker
"What happened?Did you fallasleep with a cigarette?"Walker responded,
3)Sandra Walker, who is nowdeceased,was interviewedseveral times by investigators
about the origin of the fire.At least two of these interviews werevideotaped. The
following is asummary of eachof Walker'sinterviews:
a)Walker was interviewed at approximately 10:00 a.m.on January14, 1989. The
detective who interviewed her described her as"hung over"at the time of the
interview.She stated that she had beendrinking heavily earlier in the night on
January13,1989,and went home sometime prior tomidnight and went to sleep.
She statcd shewoke uptofind her bed andwall to be engulfed in flames. When
Walk er realized thatshe couldnot put out the firealerted hcr stepbrother Bruce
Kennedy,whowas in the apartment next door,andlef t the building through the
f ireeseape in her stepbrother's apartment.When Walk erwas asked if a gas
heater could have been the souree of the fire,she respondedthat she"assume[
that she fellasleep with a cigarette.
b)Latcr that same morning after the Fire Marshall investigatorThomas Norton
rcached a preliminary conclusion thatthe fire appeared to have started on a couch
at thef oot of Walk er's bed,the detecti ve called Walker and asked her if she had
been smoking on the couch before she f ell asleep.Walker statedshe had been
sitting on the couch smoking a cigarette before shewent to sleep and that there
was anashtray on the floor in front of the couch.
c) Del.McLellan interviewedWalk er again on January16,1989, to ask more
detailed questions about her observations of the f ire.Walker stated that when she
woke up she observedf lames on her mattress andtheinside wall next to her bed.
She said she did notsee anyother flames.Walkertried to put out the flames on
her mattress but could not.Walker stated that the ashtray she used when smoking
was onthe floor between the bed andthe couch so that she could reach itfrom
eitherlocation. There was ashag rug on the floor inthe apartment.Walkeralso
showed Det.McLellan a blister,whichshe said wasa burn,thesize of a small
eraser onthe middle fingerof the right hand.
d) OnJanuary19,1989,the police re-interviewed Walker inlight
newinf ormation that David McLeod (DaB1/14 / 1956) mayhavebeen responsibl~
forsta11ingthe fire.Walk ertold thepolice thefollowing information during that
i) She went to a partyat EdBussieres in the late af ternoon and hung
with thepeople there. Shehad afew drinksthere.She stayed until about 8:00 or 9:00
p.m. when she left tovisit LindaColburn. She had some Sarnbuca to drink at
Colburn's andleft because Colburn told her togo homeand goto bed.