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Crime & Courts

Breaking: Ridgebrook Apartments fire arson, police say

Firefighters open windows on the third floor of Ridgebrook Apartments, 808 Ridge Road, DeKalb, where a fire caused the building to be evacuated Wednesday morning.
Firefighters open windows on the third floor of Ridgebrook Apartments, 808 Ridge Road, DeKalb, where a fire caused the building to be evacuated Wednesday morning.

DeKALB – For the second time in half a year, a fire at Ridgebrook Apartments has been ruled to be arson, according to a news release from the DeKalb Police Department.

A fire ignited just after 6 a.m. Wednesday morning at the apartment building at 808 Ridge Drive, which led to residents being pulled from their windows to safety. The suspect has not yet been arrested, the release says.

A news release from the DeKalb Fire Department sent Wednesday evening says four residents were saved by use of ground ladders while others self-evacuated, shortly after the department got a report of the fire at 6:16 a.m. The release says the fire, which originated in a common hallway on the second floor, caused $20,000 in damage and took about half an hour to put out before hours of overhaul to make sure the building was safe.

Police also say on Jan. 9, Chikyta Williams, 24, of the 1000 block of Crane Drive, set fire to a tenant's apartment because he was breaking up with her. Charged with arson, she remains in DeKalb County jail on $100,000 bond.

A fire in the building Oct. 27 caused the death of a 30-year-old DeKalb man, police have said. That fire, too, started early in the morning, about 6:30 a.m., according to authorities.

Fire Chief Eric Hicks said Thursday afternoon that eight apartments were still uninhabitable, but that the city's chief building inspector, Thaddeus Mack, had worked through the night to repair some of the units.

Anyone with information about any of the incidents is urged to call the DeKalb Police Department at 815-748-8400, send a text to ALERT DeKalb at 67283, with "ALERTDEKALB" in the message, or call Crime Stoppers at 815-895-3272. You can remain anonymous, and could be eligible for a reward.

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