Officials: Man rescued from apartment started fire while trying to burn bugs



ORLANDO, Fla. - Orlando firefighters said they credit a fast-thinking neighbor for pulling a man from his burning apartment late Sunday night.

Residents on Lakeview Street said they woke to the smell of smoke and walked outside to see flames coming from a second-floor apartment.

"I walked out and I heard this bashing, glass being broken. So I walked out of my apartment. There was smoke coming out like crazy. It was just wild," said neighbor Brian Murphy.

Neighbors said the 26-year-old man who lived in the apartment appeared to be trapped and trying to get out.

"I heard him yelling. I heard, 'Help,'" said neighbor Leanna Boyer.

Neighbors said when they heard banging sounds and the cries for help they race up the stairs and could hear the man on the other side of his door.

"He was literally at his front door, couldn't get out and he was calling for help," said neighbor Gloria Kay, who called 911.

Firefighters broke a window of the apartment on Lakeview Street to spray water on the flames.

According to firefighters, the resident was pulled from the apartment by Boyer, whose boyfriend and two other neighbors kicked in the door and rescued the man before police arrived. 

"I am yelling at him and I hear him yelling 'Help,' but I felt like he couldn't hear me.  He wasn't really responding," said Boyer. "I banged first, and then it didn't pop, and then I just smashed through (the glass)."

Orlando police said the man admitted to starting the fire inside his home because he said he was trying to burn bugs. 

Investigators said they later found the home filled with trash and described the living conditions as deplorable. 

Police said the victim was taken in to custody because they felt he was a danger to himself and others. He is being treated for smoke inhalation at Orlando Regional Medical Center