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17-year-old boy charged with arson for North Center apartment fire

A 17-year-old boy has been charged with starting a fire that displaced six people from a North Center apartment building last week.

The boy, whose name was not released because he is a minor, faces eight felony counts of arson, Chicago Police announced Thursday night.

The fire was started about 6:50 p.m. Nov. 10 in a trash bin near the building in the 1900 block of West Diversey, police said.

It was extinguished about 9:45 p.m. No injuries were reported, but six residents were displaced by the blaze, fire officials said.

The boy faces one count of arson for each person who had property damaged in the Diversey fire, police said. It wasn’t immediately clear if he was connected with a series of other arsons in the area that authorities initially said were related.

On Oct. 30, Arson Section detectives released a community alert warning of fires intentionally set with an open flame involving city garbage receptacles, discarded mattresses and discarded paper boxes. Those fires happened:

  • at 4:30 a.m. Oct. 4 in the 4700 block of North Magnolia;
  • at 7:37 p.m. Oct. 11 in the 2800 block of North Damen;
  • at 3:20 p.m. Oct. 12 in the 3000 block of North Hoyne;
  • at 9:15 p.m. Oct. 12 in the 2000 block of West Wellington;
  • at 10:35 p.m. Oct. 17 in the 1300 block of West Wolfram;
  • at 11:30 p.m. Oct. 17 in the 1400 block of West Diversey; and
  • and at 6 a.m. Oct. 28 in the 2900 block of North Lincoln.

The boy is scheduled to appear in bond court Friday.