DC Police: Deaths of 2 in Southeast house fire ruled as homicide

(WTOP/John Domen)
A fire in the 3300 block of Ely Place in Southeast D.C. left two people dead shortly before dawn on Saturday. (WTOP/John Domen) (WTOP/John Domen)
(WTOP/John Domen)
D.C. fire officials said a firefighter who fell through the floor while fighting the blaze was rescued and walked away uninjured. (WTOP/John Domen) (WTOP/John Domen)
(WTOP/John Domen)
The cause of the fire was still under investigation on Saturday morning, and a stretch of Minnesota Avenue remained closed to traffic. (WTOP/John Domen) (WTOP/John Domen)
(Courtesy DC Fire and EMS)
A fire official told WTOP the victims may have suffered injuries unrelated to the fire. (Courtesy DC Fire and EMS) (Courtesy DC Fire and EMS)
D.C. firefighters conduct shoring operations after the fire was put out. (Courtesy of DC Fire and EMS)
D.C. firefighters conduct shoring operations after the fire was put out. (Courtesy of DC Fire and EMS) (Courtesy of DC Fire and EMS)
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(WTOP/John Domen)
(WTOP/John Domen)
(WTOP/John Domen)
(Courtesy DC Fire and EMS)
D.C. firefighters conduct shoring operations after the fire was put out. (Courtesy of DC Fire and EMS)

WASHINGTON — The deaths of two people found dead following a two-alarm house fire in Southeast D.C. on Saturday morning have been ruled homicides by D.C. police.

D.C. Fire and EMS said they responded to a house fire in the 3300 block of Ely Place, Southeast, around 6 a.m. Saturday. Once the fire was out, two people were found dead inside the house.

Police identified the deceased as 60-year-old Joseph Burgess, of Southeast, and 50-year-old Regina Bowman, of Southeast.

According to D.C. Police, an autopsy was conducted on Sunday. While police did not specify how the two had died, they said the manner of death for both victims was consistent with signs of homicide.

Vito Maggiolo, a spokesman for D.C. Fire and EMS, said the victims may have suffered injuries “as a result of something other than fire.”

A second alarm was sounded during the process of fighting the fire after a mayday call from a firefighter who fell through the floor of the single-story building, the department tweeted. The firefighter was safely removed and left the scene uninjured.

WTOP’s John Domen reported crews had originally responded to another structure fire near the intersection of 34th and D streets, around the corner from the incident on Ely Place. That fire led to four people being displaced. There were no injuries.

Minnesota Avenue Southeast remained closed in both directions between D and E streets near Fort Circle Park due to ongoing fire department activity Saturday.

Below is the area of the incident:

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