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Cops: Teen Set Fire That Killed Mother, 3 Siblings

FDNY officials say a fire that ripped through a second-floor apartment in the Port Richmond section of Staten Island early Thursday morning -- resulting in the deaths of four children and their mother -- was intentionally set by the woman's 14-year-old son, who in turned committed suicide.

Investigators say C.J. Jones was the one who started the fire inside the family's apartment located at 302 Nicholas Ave. The fire -- which quickly spread to the roof -- took firefighters nearly an hour and a half to get under control.

Police spokesman Paul Browne said two of the younger children had slit throats.

Lisa Jones, 32, a native of Trinidad, Jamaica, died in the blaze along with her four children -- C.J, 14, Brittany, 10, Melonie, 7 and Jermaine, 2.

Officials say C.J. Jones was found in a separate room. Browne said his throat also was slit and there was a razor under his body.

Neighbors described Jones as a hard working woman who was devoted to her children. They also said the children's father is currently living in Jamaica.

No other injuries were reported, according to authorities.

The fire commissioner told reporters the second floor -- where the family had lived --failed to have smoke detectors installed.

The Red Cross is on the scene helping to provide housing for those who were displaced by the fire.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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