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Outstanding warrants lead to fire survivor’s arrest

NATCHEZ — One of the survivors of a house fire that killed two children last week has been arrested on unrelated charges.

Makita Antoinette Smith, 30, 112 E. Oak St., was arrested Monday on six outstanding warrants, Natchez Police Chief Mike Mullins said Tuesday.

The charges, which were filed in 2008, include two counts of misdemeanor false pretense, two counts of no driver’s license, one count of no proof of insurance and one count of child restraint violation. Smith also faces a $1,897 fine.

Smith, the primary resident of the East Oak Street residence, was recently released from a local hospital. Fire investigators had the opportunity to interview Smith Monday.

It was originally believed that up to eight people were living in the house at the time of the fire, Natchez Police Lt. Craig Godbold said in a previous report. However, conflicting stories have surfaced.

The fire claimed the lives 3-year-old Jaylin Graves and 2-year-old Landon Graves.

The boys’ mother, Danielle Graves, sustained severe burns in the fire and was airlifted to the Joseph M. Still Burn Center in Augusta, Ga. Her last known condition was critical but stable.

The fire remains under investigation and no additional information will be released until the investigation is complete.

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