Name of teen girl killed in Phoenix fire released - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Name of teen girl killed in Phoenix fire released

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Rosa Belen Zapien Rosa Belen Zapien
  • Name of teen girl killed in Phoenix fire releasedMore>>

  • Phoenix Police investigate deadly apartment fire

    Phoenix Police investigate deadly apartment fire

    A 14-year-old girl is dead; her mother and three siblings including a 3-month-old baby are in critical condition after their west Phoenix apartment caught fire early Sunday morning.
    A 14-year-old girl is dead; her mother and three siblings including a 3-month-old baby are in critical condition after their west Phoenix apartment caught fire early Sunday morning.
PHOENIX (KSAZ) -

Police continue to investigate a fire that killed a 14-year-old girl over the weekend and critically injured her mother and three siblings.

Investigators say the fire near 56th Avenue and McDowell may have been set intentionally, but on Monday, they released the person of interest they were questioning in connection with the fire.

Police say the man they were questioning remains a person of interest in the investigation and we're now learning the identity of the 14-year-old girl.

Rosa Belen Zapien was killed when the apartment she lived in with her family caught fire around 1 a.m. Sunday.

Zapien's mother and three siblings, ages 10, 3 and 3-months-old, were critically injured.

Vicente Gonzales says he lives next door and smelled smoke.

"My first instinct was to grab my kids, let my dad know there was a fire.. by the time we rushed to the door, the smoke was too thick, so we had to crawl our way out," he said.

Police say the fire may have been intentionally set and could be related to a domestic violence case.  Around 11:30 p.m. Friday, just 48 hours before the fire, they were called to the apartment in response to an assault, but say no one answered the door.  A neighbor told officers they left the apartment.  Gonzales says he heard arguing the night of the fire.

"Earlier, there was a woman next door to my apartment.. the apartment that burned down.. she was in an argument with her boyfriend -- husband -- they were in an argument to where it got really bad.  He said he was going to come back."

After the fire Sunday, investigators announced they detained a person of interest in the case who they were questioning, based on information they got at the time of the fire.

On Monday, police announced they released that person, saying detectives could not immediately develop probable cause to arrest the person of interest, however he remains a person of interest in the investigation.

Police say forensics and more interviews will be done to ensure the correct suspect is brought to justice.

Four of other victims are showing signs of improvement.

A car wash is scheduled for Friday to raise money for the family and funeral costs.

Benefit Car Wash
March 30, 10am - 7pm
Marble Creek Apartment Complex
56th Ave. & McDowell Rd.
Phoenix, AZ
Proceeds will help family with funeral expenses
http://on.fb.me/1gWoJda


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