A 36-year-old woman is dead after a fire broke out early Thursday morning at the Hancock Square apartment complex at Arlington Station, the Arlington Heights Police Department confirmed.
The victim, Iesha Bailey, lived alone in the fourth floor apartment, according to the Chicago Tribune.
The fire is believed to have begun in Baily's bedroom, according to the Chicago Tribune, but she was found unconscious and unresponsive in a separate room with no burns on her body.
After forcing entry into the unit, firefighters noticed a working fire in the unit and quickly located a female who was unconscious and unresponsive. Discovered with life-threatening injuries, the woman was transported to Northwest Community hospital where she was pronounced dead.
Two Arlington Heights officers were hospitalized for smoke inhalation and a firefighter was treated for a knee injury at Northwest Community Hospital. All have since been released.
The cause and origin of the fire is unknown, according to police, and the fire investigation is ongoing. According to the fire department, the preliminary investigation revealed there were working smoke detectors in the fourth floor unit at the time of the fire.
Following protocol, Hayes said, arson investigators with the police and fire departments are investigating. “I don’t want to speculate and say this fire was or was not suspicious,” Hayes said, “But we’re not looking for any suspects at this time.”
Hancock Square resident Roni Kagley said she heard the alarm go off around 4 a.m. Thursday. “I could see the lights flashing from my window and the next thing I knew someone was beating down my door."
On the sixth floor, two floors directly above the unit on fire, Kagley said she ran out of her apartment and the entire complex was evacuated.
"I heard glass falling and flames just shot out of the windows," Kagley said as she pointed to the blackened and broken windows above.
“I don’t know what or how it happened, I don’t even want to speculate,” Kagley said, “I’m just sorry someone didn’t make it.”
Another resident, Miko Suwa said firefighters broke out the sliding glass doors on the fourth floor balcony to get inside the apartment.
Scattered on the pavement below the balcony, debris from the apartment remains taped off. Police and fire investigators were still at the scene hours after the fire was extinguished.
Patch will continue to follow and update this story as information becomes available.