Devastated parents have paid tribute to their ‘outgoing and bubbly’ daughter, who lost her life in a tragic fire earlier this week.
In the early hours of Monday morning, police were called out to assist fire crews as they battled to stop a blaze at an address on Vicarage Street in North Shields.
While three people managed to escape the fire, the body of a fourth person was sadly found inside the address.
While formal identification is yet to take place, officers believe it was 18-year-old Leah Casson who lost her life.
Today (Wednesday) her family have issued a tribute, which read: “As a family we are totally devastated by what has happened.
“Leah was an outgoing, bubbly young woman who we loved so much, and we can’t believe she has gone.
“Please let us grieve for her as a family and respect our privacy at this time.”
Leah’s family continue to be supported by specialist officers from Northumbria Police, as investigations into the cause of the fire continue.
At this stage, the fire is still being treated as a suspected arson, and police are calling on anyone who can aid the investigation to come forward.
Detective Inspector Louise Jenkins, the Senior Investigating Officer said: “Our thoughts are with Leah’s friends and family at this incredibly difficult time. Not only have they sustained injuries themselves and lost their home, but they have to come to terms with the loss of a loved one, and we’d ask their privacy is respected while they grieve.
“Our investigation remains ongoing and will do so until we can establish exactly what happened, and how Leah came to pass away.
“We are not ruling anything out and are currently treating the incident as suspected arson, but are asking anyone who has information or who thinks they can assist us, to come forward.”
If you can help, get in touch via the ‘Tell us Something’ page on our website, or by calling 101 quoting log NP-20230116-0067.