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LA County Fire Assisting In Search Efforts For Firefighter Missing After Deadly Porterville Blaze

PORTERVILLE (CBSLA) — Two 13-year-old boys have been arrested on suspicion of starting a massive fire at a public library that left one firefighter dead and another missing in Porterville — 50 miles north of Bakersfield.

According to fire officials, library staff called 911 shortly after 4 p.m. Tuesday when they spotted flames in the children's section. The staff quickly evacuated everyone to safety as the fire tore through stacks of books, shot through the roof and eventually caused the collapse of the structure built in 1953.

Porterville Fire Capt. Raymond Figueroa, 35, was killed battling the blaze, and firefighter Patrick Jones, 25, has not been located.

On Wednesday, the Los Angeles County Fire Department sent a battalion chief, one of its search dogs and its handler to assist in the aftermath of the deadly fire.

The two teens suspected of intentionally starting the fire have been booked into the Tulare County juvenile detention facility on suspicion of arson, manslaughter and conspiracy, officials with the Porterville Police Department said.

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