Landlord speaks about deadly fire in Orange Mound - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Jason Miles

Landlord speaks about deadly fire in Orange Mound

"Of course, I was upset when I heard about it," says Frank Holland.

From his office in Frayser, the landlord recalls hearing the news that Melissa Poole and six children were killed when one of his many rental properties went up in flames.

"I've never had a loss of life and I guess that's what's pushing this so bad," says Holland.

He's talking about the scrutiny of him and his company, AAA Realty, which owns and/or manages 250 properties.

Surviving family members of those who died point a finger at faulty wiring.

"The electricity," one of Melissa Poole's daughters told us.

Holland admits to taking complaints from 862 Baltimore Street.  He says the company has responded to every one.     

"Every complaint," says Holland.

He showed Action News 5 paperwork he considers proof repairs were made.  Each piece is dated within the last six months.  One mentions two breakers being replaced.  But another includes a note reading quote "waiting for MLGW to come out and see what is wrong with electrical."

"If I'd known the problem, we would have solved it," says Holland.

As of right now, no one will ever know.  Investigators say the cause of this deadly fire will likely remain a mystery due to the extensive damage.

"I'm sorry it happened," says Holland.  "And I'll pray for them," he adds.  "But that's all I can do -- I can't bring them back."

Holland tells us the Poole family failed to pay rent for the last two months.  He says he decided not to press the issue.  He says he never actually met any of those who died. 

Click here to e-mail Jason Miles.

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