A woman has been charged over a devastating fire that killed five young children and their father on Russell Island last year.
Wayne Godinet, 34, died along with his twins Kyza and Koa, four, son Nicky, three, and stepsons Zack, 11, and Harry, 10, in an inferno at their Russell Island home , to the south. east of Brisbane in August last year.
The children’s mother, Samantha Stephenson, 28, and her sister were able to escape the fire.
The owner, a 61-year-old woman from Tweeds Heads, was given a notice to appear at Cleveland Magistrates Court on March 26 over alleged lack of smoke alarms at the property.
Father Wayne Godinet, 34, and his five children (pictured) died after being trapped in a deadly fire on Queensland’s Russell Island.
The fire was so intense that firefighters were only able to collect the remains of the house late Sunday afternoon after fighting it since 6:18 a.m.
She was not present when the fire occurred.
“Detectives continue to investigate the fire and a final report is expected to be submitted to the coroner in the near future,” a Queensland Police spokesperson said.
The fire was so intense that it leveled the property and destroyed two other adjacent properties.
Godinet returned to the burning building in an attempt to rescue the children, but died inside when the second floor collapsed.
Roses and gerberas were left leaning on a piece of charred masonry at the site of the tragedy.
Neighbors recalled seeing Ms Stephenson running outside shouting “my children, my children” as her partner ran back into the inferno to rescue the five children sleeping upstairs.
A heartbroken Ms Stephenson previously urged all parents to “check their smoke alarms and hold their babies”.
Later, one of his sisters came to the scene to place three roses and three gerberas against a piece of charred masonry in memory of the victims.
Dozens of Godinet traveled from New Zealand to pay tribute to the victims with a powerful Haka.