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Man dead in overnight West Baltimore rowhouse fire

A man is dead after an overnight fire in West Baltimore, city fire officials said.

Baltimore Fire Department spokeswoman Blair Skinner said the fire occurred inside a rowhouse in the 1700 block of North Monroe Street in the Easterwood neighborhood Thursday morning just after midnight.

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Crews arrived to find heavy smoke coming from the second floor of a two-story rowhouse in the middle of a group.

Firefighters found the body of the man in the hallway on the second floor of the home during their initial search.

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The man had not been identified by fire officials by Thursday afternoon. The cause of his death will be determined by the state medical examiner, fire officials said.

If the cause of death is determined to be the conditions of the fire, it will be the 29th fire-related death of the year. The fire is under investigation.

Twenty-eight others have died in 17 fires this year, four of which have involved multiple fatalities, including a mother and her two young children who died in a fire on Cold Spring Lane on Dec. 13.

Six children, between the ages of 11 and 8 months, died in a fire on Jan. 12 in Springwood Avenue in Northeast Baltimore. Three other children, and their mother, Katie Malone, managed to escape the home and survived.

Four adults at the Kozy Kottage assisted living facility in the 2800 block of Lawina Road died after a fire on March 3. Two teenagers died in a firebombing in the 1200 block of Greenmount Avenue in the Johnston Square neighborhood on March 18. Six other people in the building were injured in the fire, one critically.

The number of fire deaths had been consistently lower since 2007, when 33 people died in 23 fires. Last year, there were 16 fire deaths.

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