Man charged after woman dies in blazing apartment


A man has been charged with murder after a woman was found dead in a burning apartment.

Jean Hartwig and Thomas Murphy lived in an apartment which was part of a complex for senior citizens.

Hartwig worked in a Wegmans store in the area, but after she didn’t turn up on Friday, the police were informed. When the officers went to the apartment to check on the 63-year old woman, she was found dead on the floor.

The police arrive at the scene to find smoke coming out from under the door. The smoke alarm in the apartment was activated, and the officials noticed that there was a fire in one of the rooms. Nobody would answer to their knocking, so the cops forced their way into the building.

Upon entering, Murphy was stood in the apartment, which was completely filled with smoke.

Their efforts to put out the fire using an extinguisher were in vain, since the flames were getting out of control. The police called firefighters to the scene, who proceeded to extinguish the fire. When it had been put out and the smoke had subsided, Ms. Hartwig’s body was found on the floor of the bedroom.

The 58-year old was arrested, and officials stated that this was a case of domestic violence. After an autopsy, it was revealed that Hartwig had been strangled and not killed as a result of the blaze in the apartment.

Murphy is currently being held without bail, and has been charged with second-degree murder.

The apartment was situated on Williams Street, Cheektowaga.

The Assistant Chief from Cheektowaga Police Department has said that more information will be released about the case over the coming days, but for now, Murphy is being held at the Erie County Holding Center.



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