Information Released For Apt Fire That Killed 3-Children

Posted at 2:16 PM, Feb 28, 2013
and last updated 2013-02-28 20:17:21-05

Interfaith ApartmentKALAMAZOO, MICH –Thursday, Kalamazoo Public Safety revealed new information surrounding the fire that killed three young children.

“The area of origin was not in the kitchen,” Brian Uridge, the assistant chief for KPS said.
He said the fire started in the living room area at Interfaith Homes, Monday, February 18th around 2 pm. What started it is still unclear.

Three children were trapped inside.

Three year old twins Tevin and Teniyah Williams, and their one year old sister Tyonna Henderson died. Police say the children`s mother, Jonetta Woods, left them inside alone.

“What`s still under investigation is the amount of time, where exactly the four year old child was located at,” Uridge said.

That four year old girl had managed to escape and was taken away by Child Protective Services two days later.

Woods is due back in family court, March 19th, for a pre-trial hearing involving the surviving child.

As the fire progressed, Uridge said a resident tried to save the trapped children. However, when he opened the door, the oxygen mixed with high heat and smoke; that led to what’s called a “flashover.” The fire intensified, and the pressure caused the windows to break.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and the Kalamazoo fire marshal ruled out electrical, natural gas, water heater, or furnace issues as causes.

That’s why they said there was human involvement.
However, Uridge said foul play has been ruled out. There are still many questions.

“We`re still interviewing many people, trying to compare stories. We`ve have some additional people come forward and give us information, which changed the focus a little bit,” Uridge explained.

FOX 17 reached out to Jonetta Woods and her family. They did not want to talk. Woods’ lawyer didn’t return our phone call.

There’s no word yet on criminal charges.

Anyone with information about the case is encouraged to call Silent Observer at 269-343-2100.