Arson-Murder Suspect: "I Am Not a Monster"

"Drunk" suspect lived in building

By Tim Minton and Hasani Gittens
|  Wednesday, Feb 3, 2010  |  Updated 6:38 AM EDT
View Comments (
)
|
Email
|
Print
At least five people are dead and a baby is in serious condition after an early morning blaze decimated a building in Brooklyn, authorities say.

At least five people are dead and a baby is in serious condition after an early morning blaze decimated a building in Brooklyn, authorities say.

advertisement
Photos and Videos

Suspected Arsonist Faces 5 Charges

Daniel Ignacio, 27, was charged with arson and five counts of murder, police spokesman Paul J. Browne said.
More Photos and Videos

Investigators are charging the suspect in the fatal Brooklyn fire with five counts of murder -- and sources told NBCNewYork he was so drunk when he set the fire he went to sleep in the building afterward.

The man arrested Tuesday is a resident of the building, said NYPD spokesman Paul J. Browne, who added that the suspect "made statements implicating himself."

Daniel Ignacio, 27, was arrested on five charges of murder and one of arson, police said.  One source described him  "a habitual drunk, who was always seen drinking."

When Ignacio was walked out of the 62nd Precinct to be taken to central booking,he was asked by a reporter, in Spanish, "Why did you do it? "

He replied: "I'm not a monster."

Adding, "But I don't need compassion from anybody."

A second law-enforcement source said Ignacio was in a "drunken stupor" when he poured paint thinner in the hallway just inside the front door, started a fire, and went upstairs to his apartment and went to sleep -- in the building he had just set on fire.

He "set the fire using an accelerant and then went upstairs and went to sleep," said the source.

Ignacio was previously arrested in 2002 for burglary, and as a result was deported to Guatemala in October 2003, a  law-enforcement source told NBCNewYork. It was unclear when he returned to the United States.

Four men and a woman, all Guatemalan immigrants, perished on Saturday in the fire at 2033 86th Street in Bensonhurst. Authorities say the building did not have enough smoke detectors.

The woman's 2-month-old daughter suffered a fractured skull after being tossed from a third-floor window of the burning building and landing on the ground, but is expected to recover.

The blaze was the city's deadliest since a 2007 fire Bronx killed 10 people, nine of them children.

Get the latest headlines sent to your inbox!
View Comments (
)
|
Email
|
Print
Leave Comments
What's New
Follow us on Instagram!
We post photos taken by our news... Read more
Follow Us
Sign up to receive news and updates that matter to you.
Send Us Your Story Tips
Check Out