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Police find man dead in Elkhart house fire

The front end of a firetruck. (WISH Photo)

UPDATE: The deceased man from the fire investigation was identified and his family has been notified. The victim was identified as Christyan Roberto Cortez, 18, of Elkhart, Indiana. Elkhart officials are still investigating the incident.

ELKHART, Ind. (WISH) — A man was found dead as emergency crews responded to the fire of a two-story home Tuesday morning in Elkhart, police say.

No information about the man was provided in a news release from Elkhart Police Department. His family had not yet been notified, the release says.

Dispatchers received a 911 call about 7:40 a.m. Tuesday about the fire in the house divided into two apartments in the 100 block of Myrtle Street. That’s in a residential area just north of West Lexington Avenue and west of the St. Joseph River.

The dead man and a dead dog were found in the apartment at the front of the house on the first floor, police say. Another man, who was not injured, escaped the fire from a second-story window before emergency crews arrived.

The cause of the fire has not yet been determined, the release says, and the Elkhart County Homicide Unit was activated, as is common practice.

According to the Indiana Department of Homeland Security’s website, Indiana has had 51 fatalities in residential house fires so far in 2023. Last year, the state had 71 fatalities in residential fires.