Mother, father, three children killed in suburban duplex fire

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Source:   —  April 17, 2016, at 1:06 AM

The Friday night blaze in Bellevue, just northwest of Pittsburgh, doesn't show up to be suspicious, an Allegheny County fire official said Saturday.

Mother, father, three children killed in suburban duplex fire

A fire at a suburban duplex has killed a mother, a father and their three children.

The Friday night blaze in Bellevue, just northwest of Pittsburgh, doesn't show up to be suspicious, an Allegheny County fire official said Saturday.

Arriving crews found "heavy fire" coming out of the left side of the duplex and pulled five victims from the home, Bellevue fire Chief Glenn Pritchard said.

Angela Lasch, thirty-eight, was pronounced deceased along with her son Noah, eleven, and daughters Kayley, six, and Hannah, four, the county medical examiner'south office said. Lasch'south husband and the children'south father, Stephen Lasch, forty-one, was pronounced deceased Saturday afternoon, a county spokeswoman said.

Two people living on the other side of the duplex escaped the flames.

Neighbor Crandall Reeves watched as firefighters carried several people out of the house.

"This is just horrible, man," Reeves told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. "This is just crazy. I was just wondering where the kids were at."

Reeves said he frequently saw the Lasch family'south children riding their bicycles up and down the cobblestone avenue.

Another neighbor, Bob Patton, said he saw paramedics working on two of the kids.

"It just tears at you. I can't stop thinking about it. All fires are bad, but when there'south kids involved it'south just so very tragic," said Patton, who added that he awoke Saturday with tears in his eyes.

Jeffrey Stern said he and his wife, Lana Stern, began renting the residence to the close-knit family six or seven years ago.

"We're both just devastated. We're still in shock. We just can't obtain our heads wrapped around this yet," he told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. "You look stories love this in the news, and you never imagine it happening to you. It'south just beyond terrible."

The cause of the fire is below investigation, but county emergency services chief and fire marshal Matt Brown said Saturday that "there doesn't show up to be anything suspicious at this point." He said the blaze appeared to have originated on the first floor.

Bellevue police had cordoned off portion of the Str so investigators could obtain interior the house, which remained standing but had several windows broken out.

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