A fast-moving fire tore through an apartment complex in Hemet Friday, Dec. 27, leaving a father and two young girls dead, the Hemet Fire Department said.
The fire – which also critically injured a boy and displaced 40 residents – erupted about 1:15 a.m. in the 100 block North Alessandro Street, near Latham Avenue.
New video from the scene showed thick smoke around the complex as Hemet police officers went from door to door to alert residents to get out of the building.
“It’s my understanding that one of the victims, the 41-year-old male who was the father, and he went back inside to rescue other family members that were not able to get out, and he wasn’t seen alive after that, unfortunately,” Hemet Police Lt. Nate Miller said, according to CBS2.
The victims were thought to be 41, 12 and 4 years old. They were all believed to be living in the same unit.
Police could not immediately confirm if the two girls who were killed and the boy who was critically injured were the children of the man who was killed. A mother and an infant who were in the apartment appear to have survived, Miller said.
The cause was under investigation.