Muncie house fire that killed 5-month-old boy now a ‘suspicious death investigation’

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MUNCIE, Ind. (Feb. 11, 2015)-- After a fatal fire in Muncie Tuesday night, investigators are treating the incident as a suspicious death investigation.

Muncie police are not letting anyone near the home in the 2400 block of Meeker Avenue where a 5-month-old boy was killed in a fire Tuesday night.

The infant’s parents told authorities that they were in their room when they smelled smoke and realized the nursery was on fire.

Neighbors heard the woman screaming for help. "She was screaming for her baby. She’s like, 'my sons in there, please help my baby,'" said Danita Gibson.

The parents escaped, but said they couldn't save their son because of the flames.

“The bedroom window over there was on fire and there was just smoke coming out of the house," one neighbor said.

The Delaware County coroner says the boy, Jenson Wallace, died from apparent smoke inhalation, but the official cause of death is pending. Investigators were at Ball Memorial Hospital Wednesday speaking to the child's parents.

The father is being treated for burns to his hands. The mother escaped, unharmed.

Muncie police were outside of the home all day, making sure no one was on the property.

A memorial has been placed outside with stuffed animals and cards honoring Wallace. Neighbors say they need to stick together and are stunned something like this would happen. "That’s horrible. Why would you do that to a child, especially a 5-month-old child,?" Gibson said.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

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