Woman Found Dead after Fire at Dunmore Apartment Building

DUNMORE -- A woman was found dead inside her apartment in Dunmore after firefighters were called to the building.

Investigators are still trying figure out how the fire started and how the woman died.

The building on East Elm Street in Dunmore has five apartments. The neighbors upstairs say they saw smoke coming through the floor late Friday morning and rushed downstairs.

They found a downstairs apartment filled with smoke.

The six people who live inside this apartment building in Dunmore could not have imagined what happened when they rushed out of their apartments because of smoke.

The seventh resident of the building -- Meghan O'Malley, 46, according to Dunmore police -- was still inside her downstairs apartment.

"We were just having a meal, we just finished making it. We smelled smoke and we thought it was the stove, something we had done, and we realized it was coming through the floor. So we ran outside and I saw a trash can on fire right there," said resident Eric Waddell.

Police say the fire in a recycling bin just outside the apartment door might mean that O'Malley was trying to put out a fire herself without knowing O'Malley was inside, her neighbors tried their best to put it out.

"We started filling buckets and we found watering cans outside so we started filling those, just whatever we had, because we live upstairs, we were running it down and trying to put it out until we realized it was much bigger and we needed to call the fire department," said Sabrina Waddell.

"We opened the door and it was too thick to even look in there, so we called 911," added Eric Waddell.

According to Dunmore police, firefighters found the body inside only several feet from the door. An autopsy is scheduled for Christmas Eve but police officers think O'Malley may have breathed in too much smoke while trying to put out the flames.

State police fire marshals were on scene for most of the afternoon taking pictures and gathering evidence but troopers won't determine how the fire started until after the autopsy scheduled for Saturday.

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