Body Found After Fire Near Downtown

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Columbus Police are now investigating how a person died at the scene of an outdoor fire near downtown.

It happened at a homeless camp near the intersection of Lincoln and Hamlet Streets just after 9 p.m. Wednesday.

Firefighters say they first found out about the fire when neighbors across the street heard a loud explosion and looked outside and saw a fire.

Responding firefighters say they were able to put the fire out fairly quickly, but that's when they say they found the badly burned body in a tent.

Firefighters say a homeless person lived in the area. The person died from some sort of heating unit explosion.

They believe the fire was accidental.

"These people unfortunately have to do whatever they can to stay warm. And whatever they can get ahold of. So, there's no guarantee they what they find or what they're using is working properly. So they're taking a risk at that point, but the alternative is freezing. So, they're willing to take that risk," said Battalion Chief Richard Richardson with the Columbus Division of Fire.

Firefighters are still investigating the cause.

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