Relatives of Bronx Apartment Blaze Victims Want Mother of 3-Year-Old Who Started It Held ‘Accountable’

The Associated Press
AP Photo/Andres Kudacki

Relatives of the 12 people killed in a deadly Bronx apartment fire are demanding that the mother of the three-year-old who started the fire be held “accountable.”

Mourners held a candlelight vigil outside the charred remains of the New York City apartment Monday for the 12 killed in the blaze that many say is the deadliest fire to take place in the city in more than 25 years.

The fire was started by a three-year-old boy who tended to play with the knobs on the stove while he was left unattended, and now relatives want the parents of the child to take responsibility for the lives lost.

“I want the mother and the father to be responsible because the mother is an irresponsible parent,” Kadian Blake, cousin of 37-year-old victim Karen Stewart Francis, told the New York Post. “There needs to be accountability.”

New York City Fire Department Commissioner Daniel Nigro said the boy’s mother was not in the room when the fire occurred, but took the toddler and another two-year-old with her as she fled the building.

She reportedly left her apartment door open when she fled, causing the fire to spread to other parts of the building, and did not warn her neighbors.

“Her apartment is right behind mine. You don’t call for help? From the moment you see fire, call somebody. And if you don’t have a phone, knock on doors, do something,” said Shevon Stewart, 45, a resident of the apartment complex that caught fire.

Another blaze hit the Bronx just days after the deadliest residential fire, six-alarm fire that began in a furniture store raged through an apartment building in the Bronx Tuesday morning, injuring 12 people.


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