9-Year-Old Boy Allegedly Set House Fire That Killed Five Family Members in Illinois

Five people including three children died in the April blaze
Credit: CI PROUD

A nine-year-old Illinois boy has been accused of intentionally setting a house fire that killed five family members, including three children.

The juvenile — whose name is being withheld by prosecutors because of his age — was charged Tuesday with five counts of first-degree murder, two counts of arson and one count of aggravated arson, Woodford County State’s Attorney Greg Minger confirms to PEOPLE.

Minger previously said probation is the “only outcome” that would happen if the child is convicted, reports the Journal Star.

The April 6 fire at the Timberline Mobile Home Park near Goodfield killed Kathryn Murray, 69; Jason Wall, 34, Rose Alwood, 2, Daemeon Wall, 2, and one-year-old Ariel Wall.

All of the victims died of smoke inhalation, the Journal Star reports.

The mother of the boy, who was able to escape the blaze but lost two children, her grandmother and her niece, told CBS News her son was diagnosed with ADHD, bipolar disorder and a type of schizophrenia.

“Everyone is looking at him like he’s some kind of monster, but that’s not who he is,” the mom said. “People make mistakes, and that’s what this is. Yes, it was a horrible tragedy, but it’s still not something to throw his life away over.”

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SOURCE: PEOPLE, Christine Pelisek