11/24/2014

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Police identify woman that died in Springfield motel fire

Police identify woman that died in Springfield motel fire

SPRINGFIELD, Ore. -- Firefighters found a deceased woman early Sunday morning while battling flames inside a Springfield motel room, officials with the Eugene/Springfield Fire Department said.

Three other people inside the room safely escaped the fire through a rear window, Springfield Police said.

Crews arrived at the McKenzie Motel on 17th Pl. and Main St. at around 12:40 a.m. Sunday to find one of the units fully engulfed in flames.

Photo of Mariah McElroy from Springfield Police

Firefighters discovered a woman inside the motel room while working to get the blaze under control. She was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police identified the victim as Mariah Dawn McElroy, 22, of Springfield on Monday. Autopsy results found she appears to have died from smoke inhalation.

23-year-old Mark Connell and two juveniles were with McElroy when the fire started, Sgt. Lewis said.

"She apparently passed out and was overcome with smoke,” Springfield Police Sgt. David Lewis said. “The other people who had already gotten out - investigation shows - they did not know that. They thought she was already outside."

Fire investigators believe the fire was started by a baseboard heater near a pile of clothing.

At this time, detectives aren’t pursuing the case as a criminal investigation.

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