7-Year Old Girl Among 3 Killed In 2 San Jose Fires Overnight
SAN JOSE (CBS SF) — A 7-year-old girl who was killed in a house fire late Monday night was a first-grader at a San Jose elementary school, a school district spokesman said.
Grief counselors are on hand Tuesday morning at Grant Elementary School after the fire victim was identified as student Mariah Angel Gomez, San Jose Unified School District spokesman Paul Higgins said.
The fire was reported at 11:30 p.m. at a detached residential unit behind a house in the 500 block of North Fifth Street, San Jose fire Capt. Cleo Doss said. It was controlled in about half an hour.
Mariah’s body was found inside the burned structure. One other person was treated for smoke inhalation and one person was treated for a cardiac problem, Doss said.
Higgins said Mariah was a “very happy and sociable student” and that “it’s a tragedy for the family and the Grant community.”
The principal was meeting with staff Tuesday to discuss Mariah’s death and how the school community can mourn and honor her, Higgins said.
San Jose police have taken over the investigation into the fire.
Investigators were also probing a separate fire Monday night that killed two people at a home in the 900 block of South Daniel Way, near state Highway 17.
That fire, which went to three alarms, was reported at 8:27 p.m. Fire crews arrived and removed an elderly woman from the burning home. She was pronounced dead at the scene.
After the fire was out, another deceased resident was found in the home. Doss said the age and gender of the second resident has not been confirmed because of the severity of burns suffered in the blaze.
The cause of both fires was under investigation, Doss said.
In both cases, investigators have been unable to determine if smoke detectors were working properly because the property damage was so extensive, Doss said.
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