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Update: Township Youth Charged With Arson For High School Fire

A 16-year-old township resident has been arrested in connection with the Feb. 27 fire that briefly emptied out Franklin Township High School.

In a release about the incident, Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office spokesman Capt. Jack Bennett said the youth has been charged with 2nd Degree Aggravated Arson.

Bennett said the youth used a lighter to set fire to a piece of paper and then threw it in a wooded closet in room C303 in the high school shortly after noon.

The high school was evacuated and the fire as extinguished by a school custodian, Bennett said.

No one was injured, he said.

The students were allowed back into the building around 1:10 p.m., when they were brought into the school’s gym and auditorium, said district spokeswoman Mary Clark.

Interim schools Superintendent Eveny Pagan said at  the Feb. 27 Board of Education meeting that late buses were cancelled, but students were sent home at the normal time. She said students would “resume their normally scheduled day” on Feb. 28.

The youth was processed at township police headquarters and then taken to the Middlesex County Youth Correctional Facility in North Brunswick, Bennett said.

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