Watch CBS News

Investigators Search for Person Of Interest After Deadly Apartment Fire In Aurora

AURORA, Colo. (CBS4) - One person is dead after a fire at an apartment building in Aurora. Now investigators are searching for a person of interest in the 2-alarm fire that had some residents jumping out their windows to safety.

Three people were initially taken to the hospital. Approximately 60 people are also displaced. The fire began at 1600 Galena Street after 11:45 p.m. Thursday, according to Aurora Fire Rescue.

aurora-fire (2)
(credit: CBS)

Firefighters responded to reports of multiple people being injured and trapped inside the building, some even choosing to jump from windows to safety. Upon arrival, crews searched the building and attacked the fire.

Oswaldo Taritay and his family members were rescued from a top floor window.

GALENA STREET FIRE 5PKG.transfer_frame_196
(credit: CBS)

"We screamed, you know, help us and the firefighters put ladders up to our window. We live on the third floor. We were able to get out barely in time."

An owner of the Galena Apartments was quick to tell CBS4 he believed the fire was intentionally set.

Aurora Fire Person of Interest
(credit: Aurora Fire)

Investigators are searching for a person of interest in connection with the fire.

Aurora Fire Rescue responded to a multi-family structure fire at 1600 N. Galena St. on Thursday, October 29 after 11:45...

Posted by Aurora Fire Rescue on Friday, October 30, 2020

Sergio Gallegos survived the fire, "It's sad, crazy, because like, 14 years ago, the same thing happened. I have been living here my entire life."

Five people were treated at the scene, in addition to those who were taken to the hospital.

For those temporarily looking for a place to stay, Aurora Fire Rescue has been working to get them shelter and keep them warm in the meantime.

Neighbor Bianca Rodríguez is pitching in to help those displaced by the fire.

GALENA STREET FIRE 5PKG.transfer_frame_2680
(credit: CBS)

"There were people with no shoes, no clothes... we ran out giving out shoes and clothes. One woman was crying hysterically," Rodríguez said.

The fire destroyed most of the third floor.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

Anyone with information regarding the fire or recognizes the person of interest in the images is asked to contact Crime Stoppers at 720-913-STOP (7867). You can text to CRIMES (274637) then title DMCS and enter your message or send an e-mail to If the information you provide leads to the arrest and charging of a wanted individual, you can receive a cash reward up to $2,000.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.