Man and bulldogs die in Rowan County house fire

(David Whisenant | WBTV)
(David Whisenant | WBTV)

ROWAN COUNTY, NC (WBTV) - A man who died in a fire in Rowan County Wednesday night has been identified as 45-year-old Jason Christopher Klawitter of New York.

The fire broke out just after 10:30 p.m. at a duplex on Long Ferry Road in Spencer.

Fire officials say Klawitter was found near the back of the home and pronounced dead at the scene. He lived in a finished attic apartment of the home with his two bulldogs. The dogs died in the fire as well.

The family that lives downstairs reportedly saw smoke coming from the ceiling of their unit and the husband ran upstairs to check out the source of the flames. He reportedly heard Klawitter calling out and moving around. The neighbor tried to kick down the door but wasn't able to.

The home sustained smoke and fire damage, mostly toward the rear of the home. The neighbor said he saw the air conditioning unit in flames.

Investigators say the fire was caused by an overheated extension cord connected to a window unit air conditioner.

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