Neighbor: 'Something didn't add up' in fire

Posted at 8:41 PM, Apr 15, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-18 06:32:37-04

A late night fire that destroyed a Fort Myers home is being called suspicious by a neighbor who knows the homeowner.

Dell Nugent's yard still roped off from his neighbors' yard after a raging fire there Friday night.

"I was eating supper and looked out and I thought it was sun shining and here it was a fire shooting up and I came out and smelled smoke," said Nugent.

A Fox 4 viewer captured video of the flames as they shot through the roof of the home along South Road in Fort Myers.

"Flames were shooting in the air about 40, 50 or 60 feet," said Nugent.

He surveyed the damage done to the home Saturday evening, unsure of how the fire could have started considering his neighbor moved out three months ago.

"There was no electric here or anything like that," said Nugent. "There was no water, no electric so there's something there that didn't add up."

The supposed vacant home doesn't look so empty. One room was filled with personal belongings, empty bottles littered the lawn and even the trash was taken out.

Nugent says he has an idea of who is leaving behind the mess. "There were bums going in and out at different times, sleeping there," said Nugent.

He even showed Fox 4 where he's seen one of the squatters camp out.  "He was sleeping in here," said Nugent as he lifted the back window of a pickup truck.

"He's got his mattress and everything. he's got his bed made. There are his pants and everything in there too," said Nugent.

Nugent says he called his neighbor to tell him about the fire and his theory on what or who caused Friday's disaster.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.


PREVIOUS STORY:  A fire destroyed a house on South Street in Fort Myers Friday night.

Neighbors who lived in an apartment complex across the street called 911. 

No one was hurt.  It took firefighters less than an hour to get the fire under control.

Power was knocked out to the area for a short time.  And people could see black plumes of smoke for miles.