Massive fire that gutted apartments in east Charlotte was intentionally set, CFD says

UPDATE: Investigators believe east Charlotte apartment fire was intentionally set

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - A large 2-alarm fire at an apartment complex in east Charlotte Monday morning was intentionally set, investigators say.

The fire broke out at the Woodbridge apartments on Yateswood Drive off of Albemarle Road. According to the Charlotte Fire Department, the fire was intentionally set in an unoccupied building that was under “major renovations” from a previous, accidental fire.

The Charlotte Fire Department tweeted video just before 6:30 a.m., showing crews battling heavy fire and smoke.

“When I saw those flames close to the other buildings I was scared I was really scared,” said resident Donaldo Acosta, who lives in the building next to the one that caught fire.

Two lanes of Albemarle Road were affected by fire crews at the scene.

Several units appear charred in a photo tweeted by Charlotte firefighters. It took 40 firefighters 45 minutes to control the fire.

There’s no word on how exactly the fire was set and no injuries were reported. Officials say the fire did about $500,000 in damages.

According to Southwood Realty, the construction was months away from completion. Workers were in the process of hanging sheet rock before this fire.

The president of the property management group tells WBTV there are two cameras on the complex property and footage will likely be used in this investigation.

Neighbor Angel Serrano said he is concerned about crime in the complex after a shooting about two weeks before this.

A cigarette fire sparked at the same complex in July 2018. Forty people were displaced in that fire.

Anyone with information about Monday morning’s fire should call Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600.

Copyright 2019 WBTV. All rights reserved.