Juvenile Facing Arson Charge For Allegedly Starting Fire in McKinley School Bathroom

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ—An elementary school student is facing charges of aggravated arson after a fire last month at the McKinley Community School, according to city officials.

The fire did not injure anyone, and the damage was minimal, but it required an evacuation, the re-location of staff and students to a nearby building, and the cancellation of after-school activites on January 20.

"According to NBFD, a young kid set a small fire on the hand sanitizer dispenser," said city spokesperson Jennifer Bradshaw.

NBPD Captain JT Miller confirmed that the child was charged in the incident.

"A juvenile was charged with Aggravated Arson in that incident at McKinley School."

Students were forced to wait outside the school while firefighters extinguished the small fire and investigated its cause.

Van Dyke Avenue was eventually closed by police and students were walked down the block to 40 Van Dyke Avenue, a warehouse that, until recently, served as the home of the Redshaw Elementary School.

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Charlie is the founder and editor of New Brunswick Today, and the winner of the Awbrey Award for Community-Oriented Local Journalism. He is a proud Rutgers University journalism graduate and a community organizer, and was an independent candidate for Mayor of New Brunswick in 2018.