Toddler Dies After Fire in Harrisburg; Recharging Hoverboard Blamed

HARRISBURG -- A 2-year-old girl and a firefighter are both dead after flames broke out at a home in Harrisburg Friday night.

An exploded hoverboard is being blamed for that fire, which broke out around 7:45 p.m. on Lexington Street, WPMT reports.

“They heard some sizzling and crackling in the hoverboard, and shortly thereafter, it exploded in flames,” Harrisburg Fire Chief Brian Enterline said.

Officials said 2-year-old Ashanti Hughes was flown to Lehigh Valley Hospital, Cedar Crest Friday night. The Lehigh County coroner says she died Saturday morning from complications from severe burns. Her death was ruled accidental.

“My granddaughter, I can’t replace her,” said Mark Hughes, who went to the scene of the fire Saturday and spoke exclusively to FOX43. “The pain is so deep. I’m so hurt. My soul is hurt.”

Hughes’s 3-year-old granddaughter was also injured in the fire. He said she is in critical condition.

A teenage boy and an adult male were also taken to the hospital. Both had been released as of Saturday.

The investigation into the fire is ongoing.

A Harrisburg firefighter, who was struck by a hit and run driver while on his way to the fire on Friday night, has also died.

Lt. Dennis DeVoe died Saturday evening, the fire chief confirmed.

"Denny was a leader in our department and the fire service as a whole," Enterline said. "His passion for the fire service made each of us strive to be better in all we do. Our department and the City of Harrisburg are better because of his service."

Police tell WPMT the driver who hit DeVoe initially fled the scene, but was later arrested when she showed up at the hospital for treatment.

Investigators say Khanyae Kendall, 19, was under the influence and ran a stop sign in the area of Walnut and 14th Streets. She allegedly crashed into the passenger side of Lt. DeVoe’s vehicle, sending it through a fence and into a parking lot.

Kendall is facing a number of charges, including aggravated assault.