Roxbury fire: Police identify man who caused explosion, fire

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A Medford man who was trying to kill himself allegedly sparked an explosion and massive fire in Roxbury overnight that caused severe damage and injured dozens.

Mohamed Abdul Jabar, 28, is in intensive care at Massachusetts General Hospital with second-degree burns.

Police said this afternoon that Jabar was in a relative’s apartment when he tried to kill himself. Police said at the scene that he may have tried to cut a gas line.

Jabar will eventually be arraigned on arson and attempted murder charges.

Boston firefighters were still pouring water on to the Roxbury apartment complex this morning, hours after a massive, 6-alarm blaze ripped through the buildings.

Jabar went to Boston Medical Center with burns and “made statements” before being arrested, according to fire officials.

The buildings at Westminster Avenue and Wardman Road caught fire just before 1 a.m.

About 13 people, including two firefighters, were transported to hospitals for injuries. Most of the residents were treated for smoke inhalation, according to fire officials.

Dramatic rescues played out at the scene as residents tried to flee the flames. People were carried down ladders by firefighters and a firefighter caught a child who was dropped from a third-floor apartment.

Fire crews were still putting water on the building remains this morning, about six hours after the fire was reported.


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