A Los Angeles police officer and three children were injured after a house caught fire in Wilmington on Thursday, according to the Los Angeles Fire Department.
The fire began around 5:44 p.m. at a two-story home in the 700 block of North Hawaiian Avenue with heavy smoke being seen from the second floor.
Authorities arrived at the home a short time later and ran into the burning building to rescue a mother and her two children from a second-story stairwell, according to Capt. Erik Scott with the Department.
"They made a very aggressive interior attack without hose line to protect themselves in a very hot arena," said Scott. "There were flames around they were able to perform a great rescue and got those children out."
A man, who is not related to the family, was arrested in connection with arson and attempted murder late Thursday night after he allegedly walked into the home, spread accelerant and set the building on fire, police said.
The suspect is related to another family that resides in the unit, according to authorities.
An LAPD officer was one of the first responders on the scene and saved another child from the home, injuring himself in the process, the Department said.
"An LAPD male officer was able to assist another child out of a second-story window with the assistance of two other civilians," said Scott.
Neighbors told KTLA they could hear the mother and her children calling for help. Witnesses tried to use a hose to put out the flames and worked to remove safety bars from the windows prior to firefighters arrival.
"The mother and the children just yelling; the mother was yelling for help," said Michelle B., a neighbor.
A 15-year-old boy and 12-year-old girl were transported to a local hospital in critical condition. Their mother was assessed at the scene and declined ambulance transport.
The third child is listed in serious condition, the Department added.
The LAPD officer was treated for smoke inhalation and was released from the hospital Thursday evening.
Police have not yet released a motive for the fire.