CAMDEN, N.J. – Police believe a New Jersey apartment fire that displaced nearly two dozen people started when a woman tried to use perfume to ignite her boyfriend’s clothes.
Firefighters from the Camden Fire Department were called to the Myrtle Place Apartment around 5 a.m. on Mother’s Day for a three alarm fire.
The two-story, eight-unit apartment building partially collapsed leaving 22 people displaced, according to fire investigators. No one was injured.
Days after the devastating fire, county prosecutors charged 20-year-old Nakyah Barnes-Nelson with several crimes including second-degree arson.
FOX 29’s Kelly Rule reports that police were previously dispatched to the apartment for a domestic violence incident, but Barnes-Nelson’s boyfriend left before officers arrived.
Investigators believe Barnes-Nelson used perfume to light her boyfriend’s clothes on fire from her apartment’s private balcony. The fire soon grew out of control and engulfed the building, according to investigators.
Barnes-Nelson’s boyfriend, whose name has not been shared, was arrested and charged for the domestic violence incident days later.
Meanwhile, the Red Cross is working with families that lost everything in the fire to find a new place to live.