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Published: Friday, 8/22/2008

South End house fire leaves 3 homeless

Three people were left homeless late Wednesday night when a fire of suspicious origin damaged a single-family house in Toledo's Old South End, authorities said.

No one was home when firefighters arrived about 10:45 p.m. at 444 Knower St. near South and Courtland avenues and found heavy fire on the first floor of the house, Battalion Chief Mark Klein said.

Firefighters brought the blaze under control in about 30 minutes, by which time the flames had spread to the attic of the two-story, wood-frame house, Chief Klein said.

The damage was estimated at $50,000, and the cause of the fire was ruled suspicious but the exact cause remained under investigation, the chief said.

The Lucas County Auditor's Web site lists the owner of the house, which was built in 1900, as Theresa Stevens.

The Greater Toledo Area Chapter of the American Red Cross assisted the family of three adults early yesterday with lodging.

The fire occurred about two blocks from the scene of another fire of suspicious origin, which destroyed a vacant duplex early Wednesday at 659 Knower, near Broadway Street and South Avenue.

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