4 found dead after vacant building goes up in flames

Posted: Updated:
POUGHKEEPSIE -

The bodies of four people were found after a fire at a vacant structure in Poughkeepsie overnight.

Police say the fire may have been caused by squatters who were unable to get out due to a hoarding situation inside.

The home on 61 Academy St. had four squatters inside who may have started a fire to stay warm, according to officials.

The fire trapped them inside and made it impossible for firefighters to get in. It took firefighters from several departments more than three hours to knock down the fire.

Authorities say rescuers tried to go in but gave up, unaware anyone was inside until after it was under control.

Authorities say hoarding inside the house interfered with their rescue efforts and recovery attempts. Cadaver dogs were called in to sift through debris and look for any possible additional victims.

Authorities say at least three of the victims are men.

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