3 Released From Custody After Building Goes Up In Flames In New Kensington

NEW KENSINGTON (KDKA) — Smoke billowed over New Kensington when fire broke out at an abandoned building Thursday evening.

The first alarm came in right after 7 p.m. at the three-story commercial brick building at the corner of Tenth Street and Fourth Avenue in the downtown area.

Assistant Chief Ed Saliba Jr., of the New Kensington Volunteer Fire Department, told KDKA-TV’s Ralph Iannotti, “New Kensington Police arrived on the scene within seconds. Being that the police station is a block away, they were doing paper work in the station.”

Brenda Waters’ Report:

Several people were evacuated from a nearby occupied building as a precaution.

Investigators say this fire, like one in the same building back in September of 2014, was no accident.

“The building was boarded up and secured; however, someone got into it [Thursday night], and lit it up,” Chief Saliba said. “It looks like three people are in custody right now, including two juveniles and one adult.”

Those three people have been identified as two boys, ages 10 and 12, and an 18-year-old female. They have been released to their parents.

It is unclear if charges will be filed at this time.

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The building once housed a secondhand store.

The utilities in the structure were turned off three years ago after the first fire, and they were never reconnected.

New Kensington Police picked up the suspects within minutes of arriving at the downtown location.

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