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5 youths charged following Leslieville house fire

Firefighters assess the flames at a home under construction on Minto Street on July 30, 2014. CITYNEWS/Bert Dandy

Toronto police have charged five youths in connection with a fire in Leslieville that destroyed an unfinished home.

A two-alarm fire broke out at a home on Minto Street, in the Eastern Avenue and Leslie Street area, just before 3 a.m. on Thursday.

Police allege four boys and one girl — between the ages of 14 and 16 — broke into the home, which was under renovation, and set it on fire. They also stole power tools and other items, police said.

The youths, who cannot be identified in accordance with the Youth Criminal Justice Act, face charges of arson endangering life, break-and-enter, and possession of property obtained by crime under $5,000.

Police said information from the public led to the arrests.

Two neighbouring homes also received minor damage.

No injuries were reported; however, one man pulled from the fire-ravaged home was assessed for injuries at the scene. He was not taken to hospital.

The Ontario Fire Marshal’s office was called in to investigate, and police have deemed the fire was arson.

At the time, police said witnesses reported seeing two young men leaving the area. Investigators also obtained security footage from the area.