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Bronx Arson Attempt Caught On Tape

BRONX, N.Y. (CBS 2) -- A brazen attempt to burn down a building filled with families and children was all caught on surveillance camera Tuesday morning in the Bronx, leaving soot on the walls and anger in the minds of the tenants.

The video shows two arsonists spreading accelerant and lighting a fireball in the stairwell of the apartment building in West Farms.

The blaze was set on a landing above the apartment where a six-week-old baby was sleeping with his parents.

"It was just unimaginable, it's crazy," said Amarilys Ramierz. "I don't know how somebody could be capable of doing something like that, have no regard for other people's lives."

The footage shows a man in a hoodie and another in stocking cap both spreading papers and dousing an accelerant throughout the second floor landing. Then, one of the men lights a match, creating a fireball – and a smoky blaze that burned for several minutes.

Another surveillance camera appears to show the man in the stocking cap removing it as he flees the scene.

With the men behind the fire still at large, neighbors are understandably a bit nervous.

Several tenants are nursing burns. And while many did not want to speak to CBS 2 HD, one man is insistent that the men are caught.

"They could have killed a lot of people in this building," said Rafael Roselle. "There's a lot of kids in this building, and older people too."

Residents are grateful firefighters responded quickly, putting out the fire and limiting the damage.

Police are on the hunt for the arsonists and trying to determine the movite for the dangerous crime. They say the fire setters gained entrance to the building by smashing the window on the front security door.

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