Smithfield man dies in apartment blaze

From Staff ReportsJanuary 7, 2007 

— A man died Friday night after his apartment caught on fire, according to the town fire marshal.

Firefighters pulled the man from his burning apartment at 302 East Church Street around 10:30 p.m., according to Smithfield Fire Marshal Paul Whitehurst. The man died later at Johnston Memorial Hospital.

Whitehurst would not disclose the dead man's name Saturday afternoon because he did not know if police had contacted the victim's family.

Smithfield police did not respond to phone messages Saturday.

Whitehurst said that firefighters had an idea what sparked the fire, but he said he couldn't discuss the cause until police completed their portion of the investigation.

Firefighters were able to contain the fire to the dead man's apartment. People living in the other three apartments in the building were not hurt.

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