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Woman charged for arson at group home

Crime Watch

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IDAHO FALLS — A woman with disabilities has been charged with felony arson after deputies say she set fire to the group home she lived at.

The Bonneville County Sheriff’s Office began investigating after the fire broke out on May 24 at the group home on Farnsworth Drive. According to an affidavit of probable cause obtained by, a staff member told investigators 19-year-old Kaitlynne Kilburn, a client at the home, started the fire after becoming upset.

A staff member explained she started yelling outside of the house before coming inside and throwing things in the kitchen. According to court documents, Kilburn then grabbed a pan and started hitting the staff member with the item. Another client and the staff member went outside to get away from Kilburn and they say that is when the fire started.

After the fire broke out and everyone was outside, the staff member says Kilburn came out and handed her a green lighter. The lighter reportedly came from a cabinet that is usually locked but was open because they were getting medicine from it at the time.

Firefighters were called to the house and quickly put the fire out. Deputies noted in a report that the fire started in two places in the kitchen as well as the dining room. The fire left a cabinet and part of a wall burned. The fire also melted items in the kitchen and water was all over the floor.

The owner of the group home told investigators they wanted to pursue arson and battery charges against Kilburn because of the incident.

Investigators told Kilburn she was under arrest. When deputies read Kilburn her rights, she responded she “maybe” understood. Deputies then called her mother and released her into her custody.

The Sheriff’s Office passed the case onto Bonneville County prosecutors who filed charges in September. She was booked and then released at the Bonneville County Jail Thursday.

Although Kilburn is accused of crimes it does not necessarily mean she committed them. Everyone is presumed innocent until proven guilty.

A preliminary hearing for Kilburn is scheduled for Oct. 29.