Fire in Reportedly Empty Texas Apt. Displaces 27


A fire in a Northwest Side apartment complex that was supposed to be vacant has forced more than two dozen other residents of the complex to leave their homes.

Firefighters said the fire broke out around 1:45 a.m. Monday in a second floor unit of the Auburn Creek Apartments.

The fire department had been called to put out a fire in the same unit Sunday.

Fire investigators said it appears the complex in the 4400 block of Gardendale has been having a problem with "squatters," or people who do not live in the complex, taking up residence in vacant units.

Investigators said in both cases it appears someone set fire to a couch.

Volunteers with the American Red Cross said they provided emergency assistance, including food, water and shelter, to 27 people who live in the building.

Because of the fire, the electricity had to be cut off to the building, leaving those residents without any air conditioning.

Firefighters contained the fire to one unit.

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