Firefighters found a dead person’s body after extinguishing an early morning blaze Saturday in an abandoned Boyle Heights building, the Los Angeles Fire Department reported.

Update: The coroner’s office has identified the victim as a 26-year-old woman named Erika Rivera, City News Service reported.  Her cause of death was listed as “deferred pending additional investigation.” Her home town was not known.

According to a press release, the fire department was notified at 6:20 am by a person who knocked on the door at Fire Station 25 in Boyle Heights, reporting a building on fire a few blocks West of the station, at 2500 East Whittier Boulevard.

“Firefighters arrived quickly to find heavy smoke from the rear of a vacant 50′ x 75′ one-story commercial building,” the release reads. “As additional crews were summoned, firefighters extended hoselines into the dilapidated structure, the site of one or more previous fires, as they fought intense flames to commence a primary search of the building.”

The LAFD said It took 86 firefighters 27 minutes to fully extinguish the fire, the bulk of which was found in a small second-story or mezzanine area at the rear of the building. It was in that confined area during a secondary search of the premises, that they found a lifeless adult beyond medical help, who was determined to be dead at the scene. No other injuries were reported.

The cause of the fire remains the focus of an active investigation, it added.

Watch and LAFD video report:

This post was updated on April 16 to add victim’s identity.

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Boyle Heights Beat

Boyle Heights Beat is a bilingual community newspaper produced by its youth "por y para la comunidad". The newspaper and its sister website serve an immigrant neighborhood in East Los Angeles of just under...

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