WORCESTER (CBS) – The investigation into what caused a fire that led to the death of a Worcester firefighter is shifting to the building’s owner, who has been under scrutiny for years.

WBZ-TV has obtained court papers detailing a number health and safety violations at the apartment building that burned early Thursday morning on Arlington Street in Worcester. Firefighter Jon Davies was killed Thursday when the burning building partially collapsed.

Violations include damaged walls, cracks in the foundation, rotten railings and mice droppings.

WBZ-TV’s Joe Shortsleeve reports

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Lana Jones reports.

The owner of the building, Jean Mui of Newton, owns at least two other buildings in the city. WBZ-TV has been unable to reach her for comment.

On Thursday morning, despite warning alarms to get out of the burning building, Davies and his partner Brian Carroll went back in after they heard someone might be inside.

When the building partially collapsed, they were trapped for an hour. Fellow firefighters pulled them out of the rubble, but Davies did not survive.

Carroll was released from the hospital and returned home Friday evening.

State Fire Marshal Stephen Coan said that crews plan to “de-layer” the back of the building in an effort to determine the cause of the fire, and also look for the male resident Davies and Carroll initially went in to save. Coan said the man may still be trapped in the building or may have fled the scene after escaping the fire.

“All potential causes remain on the table. We have not eliminated any, whether they be accidental or whether they be deliberate,” said Coan, who added that crews need to be wary of the building’s structural integrity during the de-layering.

Davies, a 17-year veteran of the department, leaves behind three sons and he was reportedly engaged to be married on New Year’s Eve.

A funeral will be held next week.

The fire is reopening a painful wound for the city. Back in December 1999, six firefighters died responding to a fire at the cold storage warehouse. Davies was one of the many crews at the scene that day.

Comments (3)
  1. julie says:

    It also had illegal heaters. Either way the slumlord needs to be charged, even tho I have a huge feeling either her or the property manager set his fire, especially after hearing his message on NECN. They also need to check the other 2 buildings she owns in the city before someone else dies. And to the report who just asked about drug activity during the news conference. What does that have to do with anything ? Nothing was even hinted at about drugs. Not everyone who lives in Worcester is a drug addicted or dealer. We actually have neighborhoods with mansions, there are people that actually work great jobs in Worcester. What a witch.

    1. The Truth says:

      I believe you mean ‘undocumented’ heaters…LOL!!!!

    2. Lynn Eleyet says:

      Worcester does hve some “mansions” but not in the area of Arlington St. where there are many drug users!!! IThe last 10-20 911 call were not fire calls.
      Drug users would be less cafeful about fires starting, and they do not think of the ppl that can and will be injured or killed!!!!

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