House where 5 children died in fire being torn down

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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (AP) — Crews are demolishing a house in Ohio where five children died in a fire in December.

The father of four of the children joined community members in Youngstown for a prayer Monday morning before the crews began taking down the house.

The fire has been ruled accidental and the cause is undetermined. But fire officials said in February that they suspect the careless use of a lighter or matches started the fire.

A Youngstown fire investigator said the children’s mother was smoking while lying on a mattress on the living room floor watching television.

The mother escaped by jumping from a second-floor window.

The bodies of three children, ages 9, 3 and 2, were found on the second-floor. The bodies of 1-year-old twins were found on the first floor.

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