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Boy, 3, dead in fire in Austin

Firefighters investigate fire 100 block North Laramie Avenue Friday night. | ReemAmin/for Sun-Times Media

Firefighters investigate a fire in the 100 block of North Laramie Avenue Friday night. | Reema Amin/for Sun-Times Media

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Updated: March 17, 2014 11:54AM



A 3-year-old boy was killed and three other people were injured in an extra-alarm fire Friday night in Austin.

Around 8 p.m., fire broke out on a rear porch at a building in the 100 block of North Laramie Avenue,then spread to a neighborhing home, Chicago Fire Department spokesman Larry Langford said.

Three people — the 3-year-old, a 4-year-old boy and a 56-year-old woman — were inside one of the homes, and two of them were trapped, Langford said.

The 3-year-old — Jaantwiaon Edwards — died shortly after 9:30 p.m. at Loretto Hospital.

The other boy and the 56-year-old woman were taken to West Suburban Medical Center in Oak Park, fire officials said. The woman’s condition stabilized Saturday, but police said the child was transferred to Loyola University Medical Center in Maywood, where he remained in critical condition.

A female police officer suffered smoke inhalation and was taken to West Suburban in good condition, police said.

Twenty people were displaced by the fire. Among them was Robert Tolliver, 41, who lives with his wife and two children on the second floor of one of the buildings. He said he was a few blocks away, at a laundromat, when he saw smoke coming from the back of the building, returned home and saw fire on the first-floor porch. A young boy was standing outside screaming that his younger brother was trapped inside, Tolliver said.

He said he tried but couldn’t get to the boy inside.

The police said the fire was accidental ly starte, but the cause of the fire remains unknown.



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