Saturday, November 27, 2010

South Side fire that killed 7-year-old under investigation

Investigators were on the scene of a residential fire that killed a 7-year-old boy in the South Side Park Manor neighborhood early this morning, officials said. Three other children and two women were also injured in the blaze which officials initially suspected was caused by arson.

About 11:30 p.m., a fire broke out in a two-and-a-half story brick building in the 6900 block of South Wabash Avenue, according to police and fire officials. The blaze was raised to a still-and-box alarm but struck out as of 12:20 a.m., according to Fire Media Affairs spokesman Chief Joe Roccasalva.

The victims all inhabited the first floor of the building, police said. The second floor had recently been vacated by another family.

Investigators from the Office of Fire Investigation determined the fire was due to arson and originated from gasoline poured at the back door, police said preliminarily.

A detective with the Bomb and Arson Unit said as of 5 a.m., the fire did not appear to be intentional but did not immediately offer any further details.

A 7-year-old boy was taken in critical condition to Advocate Hope Children's Hospital in Oak Lawn, but later died, Roccasalva said.

A boy and girl--both between the ages of 2 and 4 years old--were taken in critical condition to Comer Children's Hospital, he said. Additionally, a girl who appeared to be 7 years old was taken in serious condition to Saint Bernard Hospital and Health Care Center.

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