COPY-Insurer fights payout on exploded house

Associated Press - December 30, 2009 10:04 AM ET

PONTOON BEACH, Ill. (AP) - An insurance company is fighting a claim on a Madison County house that exploded last year, blaming a female occupant for the blast.

Madison Mutual Insurance Co.'s lawsuit in Edwardsville asks a judge to not require it to pay Laura Williams' $509,000 claim over the February 2009 explosion that leveled her Pontoon Beach home.

The insurance company's lawsuit alleges that Williams purposely disconnected a natural gas line to a water heater or plotted to have it done, then left the house before the explosion. The property was at the center of a complicated series of disputes in the Madison County courts.

The FBI is investigating.

Williams hasn't been charged, and she didn't return a message left at her O'Fallon home Wednesday.

Information from: Belleville News-Democrat,

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.