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Fire that killed 3-year-old girl started by candle

UPDATED: Mon., Feb. 25, 2013, 11:33 a.m.

Investigators believe a lit candle caused the fire that killed a 3-year-old girl in the Columbia Basin town of Lind last week.

The medical examiner’s office in King County, where she died, identified the girl as Amy Garcia.

A release from the Adams County Sheriff’s office said the candle was on a dresser in the parents’ bedroom, where the child had been napping. Also on top of the dresser were clothes and a box of disposable diapers.

There were no smoke detectors in the house, the release said.

About 6:40 p.m. on Wednesday, the girl’s father was downstairs and smelled smoke, but could not find the source. A short time later, he again smelled smoke and this time found the upstairs was on fire and yelled for everyone to evacuate the house.

The girl’s mother sustained injuries to her face and hands trying to reach her daughter upstairs, the release said.

A sheriff’s deputy who was across the street when the call came in was first on scene and learned there was still a girl in the house. He tried to rescue the child but was unable to reach her due to the smoke and flames. When the fire department arrived, two firefighters were able to remove her from the house.

The girl had severe burns over a large portion of her body. She was transported to Ritzville Hospital, then Sacred Heart Medical Center and eventually Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, where she died Thursday.

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