CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Charleston police have opened an investigation into a fire believed to have been intentionally set on the porch of a three-unit apartment building on Charleston's East End Sunday morning.
Four children -- ages 3, 2, 1 and 3 months -- and an adult male were hurt and taken to the hospital.
An "aggressive fire attack was initiated" on the porch of the 1527 Jackson St. apartment building, said Lt. Ken Tyree, with the Charleston Fire Department.
The three girls rescued from the fire are all doing well, Charleston Fire Chief Randy Stanley told Charleston City Council members Monday evening, but the 2-year-old boy was struggling for survival.
"He's the one who went to Saint Francis [Hospital], the hyperbaric chamber," Stanley said. "He's minute to minute."
While undergoing treatment in the hyperbaric chamber Sunday, the boy went into cardiac arrest several times, he said.
All four children were at CAMC Women and Children's Hospital on Monday, Stanley said.
Police have joined Tyree to investigate the fire, which might have been set with the intention of hurting or killing some occupants of the apartment building.
"We're trying to figure out what happened definitely, but we've got officers working with arson investigators," said Sgt. Eric Hodges with the Criminal Investigation Division of the Charleston Police Department.
Tyree said crews found a fully involved fire around 3:20 a.m. Sunday on the front porch and in the front room of the apartment building, with only light smoke presence on the upper floors of the building.
As of Monday, nothing new had been discovered about the fire, but Tyree was encouraging people who live in the immediate area to contact police or the Fire Department if they have any information.
"A lot of the times with suspicious fires, the public plays a big part," he said. "We never know who may have seen something."
Tyree said Sunday morning's blaze is the first suspicious fire in a while.