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Fire in Rogers Park that forced woman to jump to her death was arson, police say

Police SUV hits fire truck

CHICAGO  — Chicago police say an extra-alarm fire at an apartment building that forced a resident to leap to her death is being investigated as an arson.

The fire department says a trash fire reported about 5:30 a.m. Tuesday quickly spread to the wooden rear porches of the building in the North Side Rogers Park neighborhood.

Authorities say they have identified a suspect who may have set the fire. The suspect is not in custody.

Deputy District Chief David Dietz says firefighters found the woman who jumped on the pavement next to the building. The woman was pronounced dead at a hospital.

Fire department spokesman Larry Langford identifies the woman as 51-year-old Maria Silva. A second person suffered from smoke inhalation and was taken to a hospital in fair to serious condition.