Porch fire at Pittsfield duplex believed to be intentionally set


PITTSFIELD — City police and firefighters are investigating an early morning fire on Bartlett Avenue, which appears to have been deliberately set.

The site of the fire appears to be the same address of the non-fatal shooting of a 17-year-old male Sunday night.

No one was injured during the brief blaze and Pittsfield Police said aside from the address, any connection between Tuesday's fire and Sunday's shooting is unknown.

A dozen firefighters responded about 1:12 a.m. to a report of a structure fire at 109/111 Bartlett Ave., according to Pittsfield Deputy Fire Chief Daniel Garner. He said the damage was contained to the exterior porch of the duplex.

Both residences of the duplex are believed to be occupied, but it's not clear how many people live in the building and how many of them may have been home when the fire started, according to fire officials.

Garner said an initial investigation revealed a strong odor of gasoline at the scene and, "all accidental causes (of the fire) were eliminated."

The fire was brought under control and extinguished quickly, Garner said.

Just over 27 hours earlier, the 100-block area of Bartlett was the scene of a shooting.

During that incident, a 17-year-old male — whose name has not been released — was transported to Berkshire Medical Center for treatment after being shot,

Police do not believe his injuries are life-threatening. The victim has declined to cooperate with investigators.

Sunday's incident marks the second weekend in a row during which there's been a shooting in the city.

Last Saturday morning, a 24-year-old male was shot in the abdomen near Union and Center streets and treated at BMC before leaving against medical advice.

Pittsfield Police said they had no new information to release concerning the shootings, as both are open investigations.

Anyone with information about these incidents is asked to call the Pittsfield Police Detective Bureau at 413-448-9705.

Contact Bob Dunn at 413-496-6249.


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