5 Dead, 2 Injured in Maine Apartment Fire

Authorities in Maine say five people are dead and one person is critically injured after a fire swept through a two-apartment house in Portland.

As darkness fell, fire investigators in Portland, Maine, surrounded the blackened and charred apartment home right near the University of Southern Maine.

Five people are now dead, two others injured, one critically burned, after an overnight Halloween party at the home on Noyes Street.

The blaze was the deadliest in Portland in more than 50 years.

"This house within 10 minutes was engulfed in flames," said one eyewitness.

Other neighbors describe a scene of horror.

"One boy jumped out of the windows," said one neighbor.

Carol Schiller says she saw a young man jump from the porch.

"He was totally engulfed flames," she said. "He was rolling on the ground."

Seven people were able to escape the inferno.

Fire Chief Jerry LaMoria says the department first got the calls for help shortly after 7 a.m., and arrived to heavy flames.

Others spotted those flames early this morning from the very busy nearby Forrest Avenue.

"I saw a man laying in the road," said Damien Croxford.

He says he ran help, but the heat was too intense.

"I went around back to the back door, but the flames were so bad I couldn't handle it, the flames were just too hot," said Croxford.

As of Saturday evening, the victims weren't identified. No cause was determined, either.

Neighbors say the house is referred to as a "party house," a group of young girls and their pets living on one side, others in the next unit.

"As part of this investigation, officials will be looking at whether or not any code violations existed in this building," said LaMoria.

In the meantime, another woman says her boyfriend's 27-year-old son is likely one of the victims.

"We were told there were two bodies found in his room, and that's all that we know," she said, sobbing.

Saturday afternoon, family and friends of the victims were being referred to the University of Southern Maine Woodbury Campus at 35 Bedford Street.

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