First fatal fire of 2014 in St. Paul | Christopher Muesberger - KMSP-TV

Fatal fire in St. Paul; lone smoke detector disabled

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMSP) -

A man is dead after a fire broke out at a St. Paul town home complex early Sunday morning.

The fire started at about 4:20 a.m. at a complex on the 700 block of Glendale Street. Upon arrival, firefighters said smoke and fire were pouring out from all windows.

Crews found one man dead inside an apartment on the first floor, and the victim has since been identified as 30-year-old Christopher Muesberger.

"I don't think there's anything the firefighters could have done differently," St. Paul Fire Chief Tim Butler reflected. "This gentleman was probably expired when we got here, based on the heat and smoke conditions inside there."

No other injuries were reported.

The cause of the fire remains unknown, but officials do believe it began in Muesberger's unit.

The St. Paul Fire Department determined the lone smoke detector inside had been disabled before the fire, and officials reminded everyone to refrain from tampering with smoke alarms other than to test them every month.

The building has 12 or 13 units total, 2 were deemed uninhabitable. Most residents returned to their units Sunday morning.

Less than a mile from where the fire broke out, someone left a bouquet of roses propped up against the door of Bargain Upholstery on Raymond Avenue, where Muesberger helped with the family business. He was well known in the community, and some store owners in St. Anthony Park said he did a lot of volunteer work.

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