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Police & Fire News

February 14, 2014

3 teens charged in fatal arson

Fire started by flare shot into New Albany home killed 3 children

NEW ALBANY — Two teenage women were arrested Friday for their admitted involvement in the arson of a New Albany home in January that that killed three children and sent another with severe burns to an Indianapolis hospital.

Shelby Makowsky, 18, Kilmer Way in Clarksville, and Kylie Jenks, 19, McDonald Avenue in New Albany, were each charged prior to their arrests with class A felony conspiracy to commit arson.

Both women and a 17-year-old girl, who also is expected to be charged, have told police they were with Cody Cashion, 18, New Albany, when he fired a flare gun that sent a flare through the front window of a home at 335 Ealy St. in the early morning hours of Jan. 4.

Cashion was arrested by Clarksville police Jan. 8, after he struck a CPD patrol car during an attempted traffic stop — an incident that resulted in a class A felony attempted murder charge and other felonies.

After his arrest, Cashion said that has never had a flare gun and that he had no involvement in the New Albany house fire, but the three females have claimed they were in a vehicle with Cashion when he fired the flare into the home.

The New Albany Police Department reported a flare entered a room of the home where siblings Trinity Hughes, 2, Tyrese Hughes, 4, Taty’ana Hughes, 5, and Tai’zah Hughes, 6, slept in a king-size bed.

The flare is believed to have burned for seven seconds at temperatures exceeding 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit. Taty’ana Hughes was able to escape the room and was later rescued from the home.

During a press conference Friday morning, Floyd County Prosecutor Keith Henderson said warrants had been issued for Makowsky and Jenks, and they were arrested later in the day.

“It is our belief at this point in the investigation there will be no further individuals charged in this matter,” Henderson said.

While Henderson called Cashion the “ring leader,” he said the females are also responsible for the fatal fire.

“It will be our attempt to hold these three individuals accountable for their actions, but I do believe, at this point, that Mr. Cashion is the most culpable,” Henderson said.

According to a probable-cause affidavit, the four teenagers traveled in Jenks’ vehicle from Makowsky’s mother’s home to Ealy Street with the intent to fire a flare into the house in response to a resident of that home stealing from them. The person they were targeting was not in the home at the time of the flare coming through the window.

“We do believe that they all went to the house with full knowledge of what was going to transpire as it relates to the arson,” Henderson said.

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