Firefighter, civilian injured in vacant motel fire

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Las Vegas Arson Investigators are looking into the possibility that a fire in a Downtown duplex was intentionally started early Saturday morning. 

No one was in the apartment where the fire occurred. Three occupants in the apartment next door are displaced by the fire. There were no injuries during the incident.

Firefighters were dispatched to the 300 block of North Thirteenth Street at 3:22 a.m. When firefighters arrived, flames and smoke were showing from one apartment of the one-story wood frame duplex. Firefighters attacked the fire and had it under control in less than 15 minutes.

Most of the fire damage was confined to the one apartment. The apartment next door had smoke damage. The occupants next door could not stay in their apartment. The American Red Cross is assisting them.

The fire started in an apartment where the occupant is currently moving out. All of their belonging are boxed for the move, they were not in the apartment at the time of the fire.

A maintenance man, who takes care of the duplex, told fire investigators he was getting the apartment ready yesterday to rent out. He discovered that someone had cut a hole into the side of the apartment, hidden so it would not be seen. As he was fixing it, a homeless person confronted him about fixing the hole and made threats. The maintenance man then called the police. The homeless person left before police arrived.

Just after 3:00 a.m., witnesses told arson investigators that the man was back at the apartment and threw something through a window, then left. Shortly afterward the apartment was on fire. The occupants in the apartment next door were able to escape without injury.

A damage estimate was not available, the damage was severe.

Firefighters from Clark County and North Las Vegas fire departments responded to the blaze, most of the downtown Las Vegas fire units were working a two-alarm vacant motel building fire at the same time just a few blocks away.

This incident remains under investigation by Las Vegas Fire & Rescue Arson Investigators.

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