2 juveniles charged in deadly Gatlinburg wildfire

Wildfire killed 14 and burned 700 structures
Posted at 3:12 PM, Dec 07, 2016

Two juveniles were charged Wednesday in connection to last week's deadly wildfire that killed 14 and scorched 700 hundred structures, Tennessee District Attorney Jimmy Dunn announced.

Dunn could not release the names or ages of the suspects, but said they lived outside of the immediate area.

The unidentified juveniles were charged with aggravated arson.

"Additional charges are being considered and all options when dealing with juveniles are on the table, including the possibility of seeking the transfer of these juveniles to adult criminal court," Dunn said.

The wildfire started two weeks ago, but was contained within the Smoky Mountain National Park until last Monday when high winds spread the fire toward the resort town of Gatlinburg. Residents were forced to flee immediately. 

The fire originated along the Chimney Tops trail in the national park. 

Conditions were abnormally dry as the area suffered from a months-long drought. 

The wildfire consumed 18,000 acres of land, including large sections of the Smoky Mountains National Park. 

The city is set to reopen Friday.