Three hospitalized after camper fire

MOUNT JACKSON – Shenandoah County authorities are investigating a camper fire that sent three people to the hospital on Aug. 7 and produced what court documents describe as evidence of methamphetamine manufacturing.

The fire at 3778 Crooked Run Road left little evidence of exterior damage to the camper, but a search warrant affidavit filed in circuit court states that three people inside – Dustin Wilfong, Samantha Burner and Harley Wilfong – were taken to Shenandoah Memorial Hospital where two of them were treated for “fire related injuries.”

Sheriff’s deputies and the Orkney Springs Volunteer Fire and Rescue Company were sent to the site after a neighbor reported the camper on fire at about 11:10 p.m.

Fire Chief Gary Yew said the firefighters who arrived at the scene reported “fire service was not needed.”

“It was a malfunctioning air conditioning unit,” Yew added.

The search warrant affidavit filed by Fire Marshal David Ferguson states that he spoke with Dustin and Harley Wilfong and Burner at the hospital.

“All three individuals advised that the fire was electrical in nature,” Ferguson wrote, adding that Dustin Wilfong and Samantha Burner said they had been living in the camper for about two months.

The affidavit states that a search of the property around the camper turned up a trash can with evidence “consistent with the manufacture of methamphetamine.”

Mona Seay of Basye arrived around midnight at her mother’s house next door to the camper. Seay said in an interview Friday that there was no sign of a fire at the time but she saw deputies with flashlights “walking and walking and walking” around the property surrounding the camper and a 1 ½ story house that stands a few feet from the camper.

“It appeared to me they were looking for something,” Seay said of the deputies.

The affidavit states that the items found in the trash can and surrounding area included Coleman fuel containers; starter fluid; a used generator; tubing; blister packs; cold packs; Drano crystals; damaged lithium batteries; and a receipt for pseudophedrine dated Aug. 7.

The search warrant inventory also listed a syringe, pink tablet and an iPhone among the items recovered.

<p id=’reporter_info’>Contact staff writer Joe Beck at 540-465-5137 ext. 142, or <a href=’mailto:jbeck@nvdaily.com’>jbeck@nvdaily.com</a></p>