Fire officials say three people have died, including a 12-year-old boy, and three others suffered minor injuries in an overnight fire at an apartment building in the Bronx.
The fast-moving fire broke out at 733 Beach Ave at 5:42 a.m. Monday and was brought under control around 7:20 a.m.
Neighbor Pema Sanojo woke up to the chaos and screams for help.
"I hear some people screaming, 'Help, help, help, someone call 911, someone call 911,'" Sanojo said.
The four tenants were taken to Jacobi Hospital for treatment. Three other victims were pulled from the fire and declared dead at the hospital. They were identified as 12-year-old Jahvante Smith, who lived on the third floor; 41-year-old Anneta Isaac, who lived on the second floor; and 68-year-old John Debro, who lived on the third floor.
Fire officials say all three floors were involved and part of the roof collapsed.
"It's heartbreaking. We loved that little boy," neighbor Haley Terrell of Smith. "We watched him grow up."
"He was basically my little brother to me," said friend Nelson Feliz. "He used to come with me, go to the movies, the park. There's not one thing we didn't do together."
Fire marshals are investigating. They have not made any official rulings on an origin or cause.
The FDNY said there was some confusion getting to the home initially. The first 911 caller gave a wrong address, sending trucks blocks down the road. Subsequent callers gave the correct address, but by the time firefighters got there, it had been seven minutes since the first call and the flames had intensified. The average response time is four minutes.