You are viewing this article in the archives. For the latest breaking news and updates in Ann Arbor and the surrounding area, see
Posted on Thu, Jun 21, 2012 : 6:47 p.m.

Woman jumps to safety during 'suspicious' Ypsilanti apartment fire

By Paula Gardner

Three apartments were severely damaged Thursday and one woman was injured as a result of a fire in an Ypsilanti complex that firefighters are calling suspicious.

The Ypsilanti Fire Department sent crews to University Green apartments in the 700 block of West Clark Road at about 10 a.m., after callers said that flames and smoke were visible on the second floor of the three-story building.

When they arrived, "one of the units had flames coming out of the windows," said Lt. Mike Kouba.


The complex is located north of Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti.


As firefighters rushed to the scene, a woman who lived on the second floor handed her children out of a window to bystanders, and then she jumped to safety, Kouba said.

She suffered head and wrist injuries, Kouba said, but her children were OK.

The fire was contained to the second floor, as YFD fought the blaze with assistance from Ypsilanti and Pittsfield townships, and Ann Arbor. However, some damage from smoke and water affected the third floor.

The fire started in an apartment that had just been vacated by tenants who'd been evicted, Kouba said.

"Witnesses said they'd threatened to do something to it," he said.

The timing of the fire likely affected the outcome, Kouba added. Many residents were at work, and the people who were home were able to quickly react to the alarms. Both Ypsilanti police and Washtenaw County Sheriff's deputies helped evacuate the building, Kouba said.

"It could have been a lot worse," Kouba said.

The American Red Cross assisted three families who lost their homes, but only one needed housing. The apartment complex was able to relocate the other two into vacant units.

The damage to the complex — located near the intersection of West Clark and LeForge roads — was estimated at $50,000.


dading dont delete me bro

Fri, Jun 22, 2012 : 9:31 a.m.

"... a woman who lived on the second floor handed her children out of a window to bystanders, and then she jumped ..." did he bystander then jump? or was the jumping really necessary? something iz strange about this statement.

Ann English

Fri, Jun 22, 2012 : 11:29 p.m.

I'm guessing that those second-floor windows are at least six feet above the ground, low enough to hand children to people outdoors, but still risky to jump out of.


Fri, Jun 22, 2012 : 1:12 p.m.

It was obvious to me the woman jumped after she handed her children down. Even if it is only %ft it is still a dangerous jump for any one.


Fri, Jun 22, 2012 : 9:59 a.m.

Actually,by looking at the door it looks like the first is floor is more than half underground. BTW...thanks a lot for making me try to think this early


Fri, Jun 22, 2012 : 9:54 a.m.

dading.....looks like the first floor is half underground.So handing children out of the window to people on the ground would be possible.But I think it was more of a hop than a jump.I'm guessing that you just hadn't had your morning coffee yet

martini man

Fri, Jun 22, 2012 : 12:43 a.m.

Looks like a possible act of arson, by disgruntled moochers.


Fri, Jun 22, 2012 : 12:48 p.m.

What exactly do you mean by disgruntled moochers?