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Deadly Lawrence Fire Ruled Suspicious

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A woman was killed and a man was seriously injured in a fire at Rita Hall housing complex in Lawrence, October 7, 2011.

A woman was killed and a man was seriously injured in a fire at Rita Hall housing complex in Lawrence, October 7, 2011.

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LAWRENCE, Mass. (AP) — Authorities are calling a fatal fire in Lawrence suspicious.

Police Chief John Romero tells the Eagle-Tribune newspaper that a criminal investigation is under way.

He said investigators are trying to determine what happened before the fire started Friday morning.

A 55-year-old woman was found dead in her apartment at a housing complex for the elderly and disabled. A 79-year-old man was seriously burned. Romero said the victims knew each other.

Deputy Fire Chief Dan Kennedy tells the newspaper several law enforcement agencies checked the scene, including bringing in an accelerant-sniffing dog.

Officials said the fire was confined to the apartment the woman shared with her husband, who was not at home at the time. Two other apartments in the 90-unit Rita Hall complex had water damage.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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