Kiki the cat blamed for setting house on fire

3:32 PM, Mar 16, 2012   |    comments
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YORK, S.C. (NBC/WCNC) -- A cat named Kiki is being blamed for a fire that destroyed the home of a South Carolina family Wednesday night.

Fire investigators said the family had six baby chickens in a coop on a screened porch, and while they were out, Kiki apparently spotted the chicks and thought they'd make a good snack.

"She tipped over a heat lamp that we had over the baby chicks," said Katherine Bumgardner, who lived in the York home with her husband David and their two kids.

Luckily no one was home, as the fire caused by that lamp quickly spread.

It destroyed most everything, including some military memorabilia David Bumgardner collected from tours of duty he served as a Marine in Iraq and Afghanistan.

"Luckily we had renter's insurance on the property. We'll get our stuff back," he said as he picked through what he could find in the debris.

"Obviously we're happy also that nobody was at home. Our kids are safe and me and my husband are fine. It could have been a lot worse. We could be spending the night in a hospital," said Katherine.

Kiki the cat had some of her whiskers singed and also suffered some minor burns on the pads of her feet.

Even though she is the suspected culprit, she will continue to be a member of the family, said Katherine.

"I can't be mad at her cause she did get hurt. I was lucky. I was hoping to find her. I was hoping she'd be OK."

The chicks were not so fortunate.

Three died in the fire.

Only Kiki knows what happened to the other three.

The Bumgardners have family nearby and will stay there while they get back on their feet.


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