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Investigators probe house fire that left elderly Carson woman dead

October 28, 2012 | 12:01 pm

Image: Map shows location of the house fire in Carson. Source: Google Maps
Authorities are investigating the cause of a house fire in Carson that left an elderly woman dead.

Letitia Mae Hatfield, 81, was found dead inside her house in the 900 block of East 222nd Street shortly after 5:40 p.m. Saturday, according to officials with the Los Angeles County coroner's office and Los Angeles County Fire Department.

Firefighters were called to the home because of a report of a structure fire, according to Art Marrujo, a spokesman for the Fire Department.

Marrujo said firefighters found Hatfield inside during an initial search of the home and were able to knock down the blaze in about 20 minutes. He said that investigators believe the fire may have originated in the home's kitchen, but that the investigation is ongoing.

The woman's son spoke with CBS2 and KCAL9 after the incident, saying he was driving home for a family dinner when he saw the smoke.

"I was coming up Avalon [Boulevard] when I saw the smoke. And I thought, 'Man, that looks pretty close to my mom's house,'" Kirk Hatfield told the news stations, adding that when he arrived the main door was open but the screen door was locked.

"So I put my key in to open it, but the flames were too intense. The flames were so hot, I couldn't go in," Hatfield said.

"It all seems so unreal," Hatfield said. "I don't think it's hit me yet."


— Ari Bloomekatz

Image: Map shows location of the house fire in Carson. Source: Google Maps