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Man's body found in burning house in St. Petersburg

Published May 2, 2013

ST. PETERSBURG — A man was found dead inside a house that caught fire Wednesday evening at 1030 13th St. N.

Firefighters were called to the single-story bungalow-style house about 6:20 p.m. after several neighbors called 911 to report that the home was on fire. When fire crews arrived, they found a man, who appeared to be suffering from smoke inhalation, collapsed in the bushes in the front yard, said St. Petersburg Fire Rescue Lt. Joel Granata. The man was taken to Bayfront Medical Center.

Firefighters went to the back of the house, where heavy smoke and 20- to 25-foot flames towered overhead, officials said. The blaze was mostly confined to a screened-in porch area, but worked its way into the attic and other parts of the house before firefighters could extinguish it, Granata said.

Authorities shut off power to the house after flames ate into an electrical line that was overhanging the back porch.

After attacking the flames from outside, fire crews worked their way in and found the body of the unidentified man in the porch area, Granata said. The man had been burned. The Pinellas-Pasco Medical Examiner's Office will determine his cause of death. His name was not released Wednesday night.

Fire investigators were trying to determine what started the blaze.

The man who was hospitalized was conscious when taken to the hospital, officials said. His name also was not released.