Fire that killed 2 in Camden may be arson

June 29, 2012 3:15:59 PM PDT
A fire that left two people dead in Camden, New Jersey early Friday morning appears to be an act of arson, investigators said.

The fire broke out just before 5:30 a.m. in a row home on the 1000 block of Thurman Street.

Firefighters arrived to find heavy fire from a front porch area of the home. Flames spread to two neighboring homes before firefighters were able to bring the fire under control.

"I seen the fire, like a big explosion. It didn't give me a chance for anything," said John Quinones, neighbor.

Two bodies were found in the first floor hall several feet away from the door.

A woman was also injured after she jumped from a window to safety. She was taken to Cooper Hospital for treatment.

Officials are reportedly having a difficult time identifying the two victims killed in the fire due to extensive burns on their bodies.

Neighbors say a man who lives in the home was taken into custody Thursday evening and was not at home when the fire started. They fear one of the victims is the man's teenage son.

"I played football with him. He's like a brother to me. I grew up with him since we were like 4-years-old," said Marquis Carstarphen.

Police say they are handling the fire as a case of arson. At one point an arson detection dog was brought in and investigators removed samples of charred wood from the fire scene for further testing.

As an investigation continues, authorities are hoping dental records will help them identify the deceased victims.

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