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2 found dead after Whittier structure fire

Two people were found dead after firefighters knocked down a fire in Whittier. The cause of the blaze is under investigation.
January 2, 2014 9:42:03 AM PST
Two people were found dead after firefighters knocked down a fire in Whittier on Thursday. Neighbors said they heard men arguing shortly before the fire broke out.

Fire crews rushed to the 13500 block of Via Del Parma at 7:20 a.m. and found the structure engulfed by flames. The fire was declared a knockdown by 7:25 a.m.

Authorities said the fire was accidental. According to their preliminary investigation, it appears to be an electrical fire.

The bodies were discovered in the back of the apartment building. Officials said the apartment above a garage was converted for residential use, but everything appeared to be up to code.

The landlord says he rented the room to a couple of men. He heard some commotion and then smelled smoke.

Neighbor Hilda Ortiz said she heard shouting at about 7 a.m.

"We heard some argument going on, two males in the driveway," Ortiz said. "After that, I didn't hear anything. My landlord, he lives in the back house also, he came running to the front, calling me out so I could call 911 because his house was caught on fire."

The victims' names have not yet been released. Officials said the victims were burned beyond recognition. Dental records will be used to identify them. Neighbors and the landlord told Eyewitness News that the two men were in their early to mid 30s.


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