Firefighters discover body of woman after house fire

January 07, 2000|By Tim Craig | Tim Craig,SUN STAFF

Baltimore firefighters found a woman's body inside a house at Cherry Hill Townhomes shortly after battling a blaze there yesterday.

The unidentified woman's body was discovered in a house in the 600 block of Cherry Crest Road.

Michael Maybin, a Fire Department spokesman, said firefighters responded to a call for a first-floor living room engulfed in flames about noon.

"Fire was blowing out of the window, real big," said Mary Parker, who lives across the street.

Maybin said it took firefighters -- who did not know anyone was inside the home -- about 20 minutes to bring the blaze under control. The body was discovered during a routine search of the home after the fire, Maybin said.

"It was not something we expected," Maybin said. "Once the smoke cleared, we could see she was there."

The woman's body was found in a part of the home that had not caught fire. Fire officials and the medical examiner's officer are investigating her cause of death.

Neighbors said a 23-year-old woman lived alone in the house. Mae Morgan, who lives in the same townhouse complex, said she hadn't seen the woman for three or four weeks.

In an early morning fire at a wood-frame house in Forest Park, a firefighter suffered a slight cut to his hand while battling a fire in the 3500 block of W. Forest Park Ave. He was treated at the scene. The fire began in the basement shortly after 9 a.m. and substantially damaged the house.

A fire that started at 4 p.m. in the 700 block of N. Monroe St. in West Baltimore forced three families from their homes.

Maybin said an elderly man left food cooking on the stove while he went to a nearby pharmacy to pick up prescriptions. He returned to find his two-story brick rowhouse engulfed in flames.

"When he got back, we were here," Maybin said.

The fire quickly spread to two adjoining homes before it was brought under control. Damage was estimated at $43,000 to the three rowhouses. Fire officials determined that the fire started in the kitchen from the unattended stove.

No injuries were reported and the Red Cross is assisting the displaced families.

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