Fireworks on the roof may have started massive Atlanta apartment fire, 2 arrested, police say

ATLANTA — Fireworks could be the reason an Atlanta apartment building went up in flames on Friday night, according to police.

Investigators say the fire may have started because of fireworks being lit on the roof.

Police detained two people and later charged them with criminal damage to property and reckless conduct.

Robert Stokes, 43, and Charnelle Gunn, 35, are being held in the Fulton County Jail.

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Atlanta fire officials told Channel 2 Action News that at 10:36 p.m. Friday, crews received reports of a fire at the Reserve at LaVista Walk apartments on LaVista Road NE.

When crews arrived less than five minutes later, they saw heavy smoke coming from the property.

More than 80 firefighters worked throughout the night and into Saturday to put the fire out at the building.

During Channel 2 Action News Saturday AM, Channel 2′s Justin Carter reported that crews were still out at the property working on putting out hotspots and likely would be throughout the day.


Hundreds of people were evacuated from the building on Friday night and officials say 28 are still displaced and being assisted by the American Red Cross.

Seventeen people were treated for smoke inhalation and minor injuries. One cat died in the fire.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

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