March 17, 2005 — Three victims who burned to death in Wednesday's fire in Frydenhoj have been identified as Shatia Ridley, her infant Lashawn Donovan, and her grandmother Dorothy Donovan. That's according to Sgt. Thomas Hannah of the Virgin Islands Police Department, who also said the ages of the victims are unknown.
"The fire appeared to have started in the living room. The house was wood and metal and was engulfed very quickly," Hannah said Thursday morning. "It was a bad situation."
The three victims apparently tried to escape through a back door that was locked. According to Hannah, two of the victims were found on the floor and one in the bathtub, their charred remains discovered after the fire was extinguished.
The owner of the home, Humphrey Herman, sustained burns to his back and arms trying to get the women out of the fire. As of Wednesday evening he was still hospitalized in stable condition. Another female was also transported to the hospital where she was treated and released Wednesday.
The arson unit of the Virgin Islands Fire Services has taken over the investigation. There were rumors at the scene that the fire started as the result of a propane tank explosion, however Hannah said reports so far have not indicated an explosion, and have not mentioned a propane tank.
Fire Services personnel still processing the scene were not available for comment Thursday morning.
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