Arson suspected in Lincoln Northwest High School bathroom fire, police say

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LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) – UPDATE: Lincoln Police ruled the Tuesday bathroom fire at Northwest High School as suspected arson.

Inspector Hasenjaeger says a paper towel dispenser in a second-floor bathroom was set on fire.

Police now estimate the total damage done to the dispenser, drywall and sprinklers around $5,200.

This is an ongoing investigation.  Anyone with information is asked to call Lincoln Police at 402-441-6000 or Crime Stoppers at 402-475-3600.


Classes have returned to normal at Northwest High School on Tuesday afternoon after students and staff were evacuated during a bathroom fire.

Officials have not yet said how the small fire broke out in a second-floor bathroom.

“We are working with Lincoln Police, Lincoln Fire and Rescue and LPS Security to investigate the cause of the fire,” the school said in a release to parents. “Anyone with information is encouraged to tell a trusted staff member, call Lincoln Police at 402-441-6000, or use the green Safe to Say button on our website.”

The school was evacuated while the fire was extinguished, and LFR and Lincoln Public Schools ventilated and cleaned the area.

Some classes in rooms that were affected by the fire will be moved to other areas of the building while the rooms are cleaned.

A spokesperson for the school district said the overhead sprinklers did activate in one of the classrooms.

School officials estimate that less than $1,000 in damage was done to the building.

One student did have an unrelated medical emergency after all students were back in the building.

Mindy Burbach, the spokesperson, tamped down reports of fights coming from parents and students.

“There were a couple of disagreements that took place between small groups of students, but nothing major,” Burbach told Channel 8 in an email.  “Nothing more than we might see on a typical day in a high school. Staff were able to get the situation under control quickly.”

Categories: Education News, Lancaster, News