Man questioned in explosion, house fire in Oak Lawn
BY STEVE METSCH Sun-Times Media January 11, 2014 2:56PM
House Explosion and Fire at 8904 S. 55th Ct. in Oak Lawn Saturday, January, 11, 2014. | Jim Boyce/For Sun-Times Media
Updated: January 11, 2014 11:04PM
An explosion rocked a quiet Oak Lawn neighborhood early Saturday, destroying a house.
Police in the southwest suburb were questioning a man who lived in the house at 8904 S. 55th Ct., where the force of the 5 a.m. explosion was so great, it blew out walls, sent bricks flying throughout the yard and damaged neighboring homes.
The police had gotten a call about an unwanted person at the home about three hours before the explosion. Officers intervened in a “verbal disagreement,” and a woman and children left for the night with some friends while a male resident stayed at the house, according to the police.
“The house is a total loss,” said John Hojek, an Oak Lawn Fire Department battalion chief, but no one was injured.
When firefighters arrived, Hojek said, “Everybody was out of the house except for [the man who lived there]. He was taken into custody.”
“As soon as I walked to the sidewalk outside my house, I could see the flames shooting out toward the stree,” said Anthony Lewis, 28, who lives about a block to the south.
The house just north of the home where the explosion took place suffered an estimated $10,000 in damage, Hojek said.
The state fire marshal was investigating.