Firefighter injured in 11th blaze in abandoned Midtown neighborhood - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Firefighter injured in 11th blaze in abandoned Midtown neighborhood

Memphis firefighters responded Thursday morning to yet another suspicious fire in the 1400 block of Jefferson Avenue. It was the 11th time this week that a fire broke out in the same abandoned Midtown neighborhood.

A firefighter sustained second degree burns to his face and was transported to The Med in non-critical condition following the latest fire, which broke out shortly before 7:00 a.m..

Investigators with the Memphis Fire Department say they're looking for an arsonist. They spent most of Wednesday morning posting flyers in the area, hoping a witness might come forward. But by mid-afternoon, firefighters were back on the block battling another blaze.

Although the targeted buildings are officially vacant properties, there's plenty of evidence -- such as a mattress found in one burned out apartment -- showing squatters have shacked up on the premises.

William Koenig used to live one block from where the blazes are being started. He still drives down Jefferson every day.

"It's everywhere," said Koenig of crime in the neighborhood. "Just crackheads yelling at me, getting in front of my car."

Koenig says the neighborhood went downhill long ago.

But things could soon change with the possibility of developers buying property on the block with plans to build a Target store.

But nothing has happened yet, aside from the fires.

If you have information that might help investigators, call CrimeStoppers at 901-528-CASH.


Click here to send an email to Nick Kenney.

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