A clothes dryer that was found inside a townhouse where a man and his baby were killed had allegedly been stolen from the next-door unit, likely causing a gas leak that led to a deadly fire and explosion.
Investigators are still trying to figure out how the dryer ended up in the man’s home, killing him in a fiery explosion last Wednesday at 3:00am. The fire destroyed four public housing unites and seven other people were also injured.
Some neighbors have said he bought the dryer while police can’t find proof that he bought it or that it was stolen. The home was unoccupied when the fire ignited, sparking a massive explosion that was heard for miles. The man’s girlfriend insisted that there was no dryer in their home. She has hired a lawyer, but a lawsuit has not been filed.
It has been suggested that the dryer was either blown into their home by the blast or planted there by the police. Authorities discount both accusations.
During news conferences, the victims’ relatives have accused police and firefighters of ignoring pleas for help as her boyfriend and baby lay trapped beneath burning debris.
They also have said that the smell of gas was a persistent problem at the complex and that previous complaints were never investigated.
Police and fire officials said the victims’ apartment was fully engulfed in flames when they arrived just minutes after the blast and that no one could have gone inside. There is no record of residents’ complaints concerning possible gas leaks.