SOUTH LOS ANGELES, Calif. (KTLA) — A man was found dead on Sunday morning inside a South L.A. auto repair shop that had been converted into a living space, authorities said.
A passerby noticed smoke pouring from the building located at 8002 South San Pedro Street, and dialed 911.
The Los Angeles Fire Department arrived on the scene, and broke through a set of metal security doors to battle the flames.
Inside, firefighters found pack-rat conditions, according to the LAFD. They also discovered the man’s body just inside the front doorway.
Part of the small building had been turned into a living space, and it was not equipped with smoke alarms or fire sprinklers, investigators said.
The front security door had a double-cylinder (key required on both sides) deadbolt lock, which is not locally permitted in residential settings.
The building did not have electricity and investigators believed a candle may have set off the blaze.
It took 30 firefighters about thirteen minutes to fully extinguish the flames. The cause of the fire remained under investigation.
No other injuries were reported. The victim was believed to be in his 50’s, however, his name was not known.