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Police & Fire

Four Bodies Recovered After Fire Destroys Building In Area

Four bodies were discovered inside a home that burned in Poughkeepsie.
Four bodies were discovered inside a home that burned in Poughkeepsie. Photo Credit: Bill Johnson/

A total of four bodies have now been uncovered following a fire in an abandoned building that was destroyed by fire in the area early Monday.

Two of the bodies were found by firefighters right after the fire was extinguished. Two additional bodies were found hours later while overhauling the fire, said City of Poughkeepsie Fire Chief Mark Johnson. 

The fire, at 61 Academy St., was reported around 1:38 a.m. Monday, said Johnson.

When firefighters arrived on scene around 1:41 a.m., the entire first and second floors of the vacant home were engulfed in flames, the chief said.

"We pretty much knew right away that the home could not be saved," he said.

The building had been vacant for years and there were no utilities active. 

Once the fire had been extinguished around 4 a.m., with the help of Arlington and Fairview fire departments, firefighters discovered the first body around 4:15 a.m. on the second floor near a fire escape, Johnson said. 

The second body was discovered about 20 minutes later on the third floor near a window, he added.

Two additional bodies were found on the first floor during an overhaul of the structure.

There is no identification for the four killed in the fire, but they may have been homeless.

No firefighters were injured, the chief said.

Much of the time on scene was spent protecting 59 Academy St., from the fire spreading to that occupied building. The building survived with minor smoke damage.

The fire burned the entire vacant building, a former residential structure: "It's a total loss," Johnson said.

Firefighters are still currently on the scene watching for hot spots.

City of Poughkeepsie Fire Department, City of Poughkeepsie Police Department, the District Attorney's Office and the Dutchess County Medical Examiner are investigating the incident, Johnson said. 

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