An arrest has been made in a music studio fire that left two dead and two critically injured in Studio City, with one of the fatal victims identified by authorities on Sunday.
Eferem Demery, a 28-year-old Los Angeles man, was arrested Saturday night and booked on suspicion of murder Sunday morning, according to the Los Angeles Police Department. The coroner identified Devaughn Kemar Carter, 28, as one of the two people killed and friends told KTLA he was a father from Inglewood.
Some 80 firefighters responded to the blaze at 3779 N. Cahuenga Blvd. shortly before 7 a.m. Saturday, the Los Angeles Fire Department said.
A company called Top Notch Recordings was listed under that address.
It took crews about half an hour to extinguish the flames, according to the Fire Department.
Two men were killed and a man and a woman were left in critical condition, LAPD said Saturday evening. In a news conference earlier that day, Capt. William Hayes said the deceased victims were male and female.
Hayes estimated that there were about a dozen people inside the recording studio when the fire happened. The building, which had several rooms inside, operated 24 hours a day, the officer said.
A longtime tenant who did not want to be identified provided KTLA with three images he said were taken by a motion-activated camera over his door during the fire.
The first image, time-stamped April 14 at 5:05:50, shows a hallway with no sign of a fire. One individual appears to be walking in the photo.
In a second still time-stamped at 6:54:01, smoke apparently starts to fill the hallway, which looks empty. An image taken a minute later shows the area completely filled with smoke.
L.A. Pryce, a musician inside the studio at the time the fire broke out, said he is praying for the loved ones of those who lost their lives. Just a day earlier, he told KTLA of his own harrowing escape from the flames.
“My prayers go out to them and their family,” he said. “I can’t even imagine. I just know what I went through, trying to get out of it. It was horrific. It was terrifying.”
LAPD said it would provide further details about Sunday’s arrest at a news conference on Monday afternoon.