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Teen dies in Harrison Place fire; cops on the hunt for arsonists responsible

The Brooklyn Paper
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A man tending to his clothes at a late-night laundry may be able to help cops in their search for the two arsonists who lit up a Harrison Place apartment building where a 17-year-old girl was killed.

Police said that five people were also injured in the 4:30 a.m. blaze between Porter and Knickerbocker avenues that killed Grover Cleaveland High School student Sofia Olivo Tuesday morning.

The fire, it’s believed, was started when two men poured gas in the vestibule of the three story building. A gas can was reportedly found a short distance away.

Horrified witnesses said that Olivo had a chance to follow her relatives out an open window, but ended up getting trapped by the flames. At least one of her relatives, a cousin, was still hospitalized for injuries she suffered trying to pull Olivo out.

Cops said that they have video footage of two men dousing the vestibule with gasoline. The faces of the two men are obscured, however.

Yet there is a possible witness, police said. A man doing his laundry may have seen the suspects as they entered the building at that late hour.

Cops are distributing a photo of the witness in the hopes that he comes forward and tells investigators what he knows.

No motives behind the arson were forthcoming as this paper went to press.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is urged to come forward.

Calls can be made to either the 90th Precinct at (718) 963-5311 or the NYPD CrimeStoppers hotline at (800) 577-TIPS. All calls will be kept confidential.

Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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