The body of a 68-year-old woman was found inside a Boyle Heights apartment building that caught fire Wednesday morning.
The fire was reported at the two-story building in the 500 block of South Clarence Street shortly after 4 a.m., Los Angeles Fire Department spokesperson Margaret Stewart stated in a news alert.
Smoke was showing when firefighters arrived and went into an offensive mode to attack the blaze.
It took 44 firefighters 21 minutes to extinguish the fire, preventing it from spreading beyond the point of origin, Stewart said.
A victim was located as firefighters were conducting a search of the apartment.
The unidentified victim was pronounced dead at the scene, Stewart said.
Her family identified her as Vicky Gonzalez.
An arson team was conducting an investigation into the cause of the fire, which neighbor Kimberly Giles said spread quickly.
“All you heard was two footprints on the ceiling, and I looked out the window and you just see the flames,” Giles said. “I grabbed the nearest jacket, ran outside and grabbed my water hose, but the water hose was not helping at all … I tried to do as much as I could.”
Commuters were asked to avoid the area of South Clarence Street south of East 4th Street due to the investigation.