Local News

Saturday, Dec 14 2013 04:59 PM

Morning fire kills pregnant woman

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    This is an old building converted into a dwelling where a woman died in a fire early Saturday morning in the alley of the 700 block of Eye Street in Bakersfield.

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    Elaine Carrillo lives in the neighborhood of the 700 block of Eye Street where a woman died in an early morning fire.

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    Trash services in the city of Bakersfield will change this week with the Thanksgiving holiday.

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BY LOIS HENRY Californian staff writer email: lhenry@bakersfield.com

Neighbors shook their heads and sighed when asked about the young woman who lost her life in an early morning fire in central Bakersfield Saturday.

It's just sad, very sad, was the general reaction.

Most of those living near the house in the 700 block of Eye Street didn't know her. They'd seen her coming and going only a few days before the blaze.

None knew the 30-year-old Bakersfield woman was pregnant.

"She had a red Mustang and she parked it here," said Elaine Carrillo, who lives across the street. "If I'd known she was pregnant, I'm the type, I would have asked how the baby was doing, how far along. That sort of thing. I'm a labor and delivery nurse so I love knowing that kind of stuff."

She never got that chance.

Bakersfield firefighters were called to the fire about 4:40 a.m. Saturday. It had started in a detached back building that was illegally converted to a living space.

Firefighters quickly put out the flames but found the woman dead behind the door.

The fire started accidentally, according to Bakersfield fire officials.

Some wood in a wood burning stove had fallen out, setting blaze to the interior.

The dwelling was in a windowless, masonry structure that neighbors said had originally been a smokehouse.

Fire officials said the converted living space had numerous violations.

Carrillo said the smokehouse had been condemned some time prior, "but people were living in it anyway." That information couldn't be independently verified Saturday evening.

Neighbors all complained that the house had a lot of people in and out and police were regularly on the scene.

A woman inside the house declined to answer any questions, only saying that reporters were not allowed to come in the yard.

Officials had not released the woman's name by early Saturday evening.

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