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Saturday, January 12, 2019

Riverdale Church Fire with Civilian Fatality - UPDATED January 18th ID of Deceased

MEDIA CONTACT; Mark E. Brady, Chief Public Information Officer, 240-508-7930
MEBrady@co.pg.md.us.    @PGFDPIO

Just before 2:30 am, Saturday, January 12th, a 911 caller reported smoke coming from the roof of a structure.  Firefighters arrived at a 1-story building that was being used as a church and found a working fire inside.  It took about 30 minutes to extinguish the fire.

Shortly after an investigation commenced a deceased male was found inside.  The Prince George’s County Police Department Homicide joined Fire Investigators as a matter of standard operating procedure whenever a fatality is involved at the scene of a fire.  ATF Agents also joined in the investigation being as a church was involved. The joint investigation will continue until an autopsy determines the cause of death and a cause of the fire has been determined.

The Celestial Church of Christ is located at 5804 Roanoke Avenue in Riverdale.  Fire loss is estimated at $100,000.  There were no other firefighter or civilian injuries.  The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

The name of the deceased will not be released until after an autopsy has been completed.

UPDATE - January 18, 2019 1:30 pm

After an autopsy by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner the deceased has been identified  as Kingsley Isidore Duru. He was a 54 year old male who was associated with the church.

A smoke alarm was located inside the structure, however, it was not working.

The investigation into the cause of the fire remains open and on-going.