UNIVERSITY PLACE, WA — One person was injured and a building destroyed after a woman threw a Molotov cocktail at a University Place apartment complex, according to the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department.
Deputies say just after midnight Monday morning, they received a 911 call for an apartment on fire in the 4500 block of 76th Ave. W.
Deputies and officers from the Lakewood, Steilacoom, and Fircrest police departments all rushed to the scene. When they arrived, they say they found the four-unit apartment complex engulfed in flames, with thick black smoke pouring from the windows and roof.
Officers began evacuating nearby units, when a witness told them that a resident was still trapped inside one of the burning apartments in the main building. Before deputies could even respond however, they say the woman trapped inside jumped from the second story. She survived, and has been taken to a nearby hospital to be treated for minor injuries.
West Pierce fire was called to extinguish the blaze, and though they managed to keep the fire from spreading to other apartments, all four units in the burning building were destroyed.
While firefighters contained the fire, deputies set about interviewing witnesses, trying to determine how the fire was set. They say several witnesses told them they had heard an argument inside one of the apartments earlier that night, which ended with a woman tossing a Molotov cocktail at the building.
Deputies are now trying to track that suspect down, and say the fire is being investigated as a domestic violence arson. No suspect description has been released.