West Salt Lake City blaze turns into domestic violence case

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Firefighters quickly doused a blaze at a northwest Salt Lake City home late Wednesday morning, but the scene soon turned into a police matter.

Salt Lake City Fire Department spokesman Jasen Asay said no injuries were reported in the 8:55 a.m. fire at 377 N. 800 West, and all four occupants of the residence were reported to have escaped the smoke and flames.

However, when a woman who lived in the ground-floor apartment initially told firefighters that her husband had assaulted her. The man was questioned by responding police officers and arrested on suspicion of domestic violence.

Asay said the house is divided into upstairs and downstairs apartments. The fire is believed to have begun in the ground-floor apartment's front room, but the cause remained under investigation. Asay did say that fire investigators planned to question the husband about what role, if any, he played in the blaze.

"As crews arrived at the scene, there were people on the front porch working to extinguish the fire with a garden hose. Firefighters entered the structure and quickly had the fire under control and then extinguished," Asay said.

The house was heavily damaged, but a detailed dollar estimate was still being developed. The Red Cross was assisting the occupants with shelter.


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