Red Cross, Police Aiding Miami Gardens Residents After Suspected Arson Fire Destroys Apartment Complex - NBC 6 South Florida

Red Cross, Police Aiding Miami Gardens Residents After Suspected Arson Fire Destroys Apartment Complex

The suspected arsonist allegedly lit a mattress on fire with a lighter in an attempt to kill himself.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Residents Picking Up Pieces After Miami Gardens Fire

    Residents are picking up the pieces after a Miami Gardens fire that police say was intentionally set left several units of an apartment building destroyed. Malachi Wilder was arrested for the fire, officials said.

    (Published Friday, July 13, 2018)

    What to Know

    • An apartment fire on Wednesday displaced over 50 residents in Miami Gardens.

    • Malachi Wilder, 19, was charged with attempted arson in connection with the crime.

    • Community groups, including the Red Cross, are aiding the displaced residents and are handing out food and asking for donations.

    Miami Gardens residents were still picking up the pieces days after a suspected arsonist started an apartment fire that destroyed dozens of people's homes.

    The Red Cross, Miami Gardens police and volunteer organization Cease Fire are working together to provide relief supplies and assistance to the over 50 residents displaced.

    Malachi Wilder, 19, is in jail and facing charges of first degree arson and attempted murder in connection with Wednesday's fire at the two-story apartment complex in the 2600 block of NW 201th Street.

    Wilder allegedly lit a mattress on fire with a lighter in an attempt to kill himself, according the arrest form.

    Suspected Arsonist Arrested in Apartment Fire

    [MI] Suspected Arsonist Arrested in Apartment Fire

    A 19-year-old was arrested and faces charges of arson and attempted murder after a fire displaced nearly 50 residents in Miami Gardens.

    (Published Thursday, July 12, 2018)

    "For him to want to supposedly take his baby mama’s life and his own ... does he realize he displaced 40 people? All of us have no place to go." said Vicky Shure, who was affected by the fire.

    The father of the woman who lived in the unit where the fire started told NBC 6 this was her first apartment at 20 years old.

    "Now she has to start all over again from scratch," he said.

    The fire spread to multiple apartments, with a handful of them damaged by fire but many more were damaged from the smoke. Wilder was detained at the scene, and then eventually arrested and taken into custody.

    Now the community has banded together to help the residents, some of them who may have lost everything.

    Dolores Rodriguez, a displaced resident, said she's been wearing the same clothes for two days.

    Man Charged in Miami Gardens Apartment Fire

    [MI] Man Charged in Miami Gardens Apartment Fire

    NBC 6's Amanda Plasencia has more on the possible arson investigation after a 19-year-old was taken into custody following Wednesday's blaze.

    (Published Thursday, July 12, 2018)

    "They're hungry, so we brought out water, drinks, chips we just ordered some food," said Rashawn Welch, a Cease Fire volunteer. "And we're urging the community to give whatever they can to these folks."

    Several community organizations, along with law enforcement, will be handing out hot meals as well as toys, clothing and other items of comfort Saturday and Sunday at the scene of the apartment fire at 2601 NW 207th Street:

    Saturday
    Breakfast: 9 a.m.
    Dinner: 5 p.m.

    Sunday
    Breakfast: 10 a.m.
    Dinner: 5 p.m.

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