Metro-East News

Employee set nursing home fire, prosecutors say

A structure fire at Cahokia Nursing and Rehabilitation Center resulted in a mass evacuation and few minor injuries.
A structure fire at Cahokia Nursing and Rehabilitation Center resulted in a mass evacuation and few minor injuries.

An East St. Louis woman set the Cahokia nursing home she worked at on fire, according to federal charges.

Lori M. Jones, 49, is facing an arson charge in the U.S. Southern District Court of Illinois. Prosecutors say she “maliciously” damaged the Cahokia Nursing and Rehabilitation Center on May 31, 2016. Jones was an employee at the facility.

The 2016 fire caused a mass evacuation at the nursing home, and a few residents had to be treated for smoke inhalation. When crews arrived at the nursing home, they found heavy smoke inside.

Jones was released on bond, but her location is being monitored electronically until her jury trial in late July. Jones also will not be allowed to work at any nursing home or assisted care facility or be in a position where she assists or takes care of other individuals, according to charging documents.

An arson conviction carries a minimum penalty of five years in prison and a maximum of 20 years, followed by up to three years of supervised release and a fine up to $250,000.

Jones had formal charges issued against her June 20, and appeared in court for the first time Thursday.

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