Idaho News

8 displaced, cat dies as Boise apartments burn for second time in 2 weeks

Eight people were displaced and a cat was killed by a fire that broke out in a Downtown Boise apartment building Tuesday night, a fire official said Wednesday. A firefighter was treated at a local hospital for an injury he suffered while battling the blaze.

One resident of the building was rescued by three men who kicked down his door and helped him get to safety.

The fire was reported at 7:45 p.m. at the building at 1421 Jefferson St. Property records show it was built in 1895.

Investigators are trying to determine why there were two fires in the same unit on the second floor in two weeks, Boise Fire spokeswoman Char Jackson said. They have not determined a cause for either of the fires yet.

The first fire was on April 12. Battalion Chief John Peugh told the Statesman that three people were displaced by that fire, and investigators would look for links between the two fires.

Are the fires considered suspicious?

“Just because of the timing between the two, that makes us take a harder look at them,” Jackson said.

Jackson could not say whether someone was living in the unit where the fire started and, if so, at home when the fire started.

The fire gutted the second floor of the building and burned off most of the roof.

All of the seven apartments — three on the second floor, three on the ground floor and one in the basement — were damaged by the fire, Jackson told the Statesman. Firefighters were able to salvage some possessions from the first floor, including clothing, a guitar and amplifier.

The Boise Fire Burnout Fund and American Red Cross are providing assistance to residents affected by the fire.

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Katy Moeller has worked at The Idaho Statesman for 13 years. She’s a generalist, an investigative reporter and a feature writer who has been on the breaking news team for a decade. She was Idaho Press Club’s 2016 Print Reporter of the Year.If you like seeing stories like this, please consider supporting our work with a digital subscription to the Idaho Statesman.