Tulsa Fire That Killed Baby Girl Under Investigation


Monday, April 13th 2015, 1:13 pm
By: News On 6


Investigators said a fire that killed an 11-month-old girl over the weekend was likely accidental.

Police said a 13-year-old family member was babysitting the toddler when the fire started just before 2:00 Sunday morning.

Police said they don't expect to file any criminal complaints against the mother.

Stephanie Ayers can't get any sleep after she tried to rescue her neighbor's 11-month-old girl from a burning apartment.

"I couldn't get the baby, the smoke was too thick; there was nothing. You couldn't of gone up there, like I tried, I got up to the top of the stairs, I couldn't find her," she said.

Ayers was sleeping on the couch when smoke started to fill her neighbor's apartment.

"I got a bang at the door, I mean I'm talking they were banging the door down, and it was them, it was the kids," she said.

Police said a 13-year-old family member was babysitting the 11 month old, a 3 year old and a 6 year old.

The teen, along with the two older children got out. When firefighters learned the baby was still inside, they rushed in to rescue her.

They started CPR, but the baby died later at the hospital.

4/12/2015 Related Story: Tulsa Police: Baby Dies Following Tulsa Apartment Fire

Stan May with the Tulsa Fire Department said they are looking to see what started the fire.

"The investigators haven't released anything officially, it's still under investigation. They're learning towards an accidental cause, they just don't want to release that yet until they get all their information and make sure they talk to everybody," May said.

While child crisis detectives said the investigation isn't closed, they don't expect to file criminal complaints against the mother.

Sergeant Michael Brown said 13 year olds can babysit.

"There's nothing legally prohibiting a 13 year old from being a babysitter for an 11-month-old child, everything is individual based upon the maturity of the 13-year-old and the needs of an 11-month-old," he said.

Ayers said she hopes her neighbor can begin to heal.

"I just feel so horrible for the mother for losing a child. I couldn't bear to lose a child, I couldn't bear," she said.

Maintenance workers at Apache Manor went inside the apartment Monday.

Tulsa Firefighter, Kyle Younger – a ten-year veteran of the department – suffered an injury while fighting the fire. He's expected to be back at work in a couple days.