Newport motel fire caused by carelessly discarding smoking materials, police say

NEWPORT, Ore. – A woman has been indicted in connection with a fire that killed four people at a Newport motel last year.

Rebecca Joanne Sinclair faces four felony counts each of second-degree manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide, according to Lincoln County court documents. She also faces seven counts of reckless endangering and one count of reckless burning.

Photos: Fire rips through City Center Motel

Newport police said the origin of the fire was Sinclair's room on the ground level of the motel. Careless discarding of smoking materials was determined to be the likely cause of the fire, police said.

The fire started at the City Center Motel on the morning of Aug. 5, 2016. Later that day, the bodies of 51-year-old Tammi Sue Hepner and 63-year-old Allen Arthur Hepner were discovered in the rubble. The couple was visiting from Portland.

Read more: Couple in Newport fire died 'holding one another,' daughter says

The bodies of a Springfield, Ore., couple were found that night. Sandra Kay Shoemaker, 60, and Danny Keith Shoemaker, 64, were staying in one of the rooms.

Watch: Drone video of the fire

© 2017 KGW-TV


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