Hamilton police probe continues after toddler rescued from fire

Hamilton police are working with children's aid officials to investigate why firefighters found a 15-month-old boy alone inside a burning house on Thursday.

Detectives, children's aid officials looking into possible charges

A firefighter rescues a 15-month-old boy from a house fire in north Hamilton on Thursday afternoon. (Courtesy of Adam Quenneville)

Hamilton police are working with children's aid officials to investigate why Hamilton firefighters found a 15-month-old boy alone inside a burning home Thursday.

Just after noon on Thursday, emergency received a call about smoke coming from a house on Bay Street North near Stuart Street, in north Hamilton.

Firefighters rescued a 15-month-old toddler found inside the house, who was later sent to hospital with smoke inhalation.

Though the fire department said the incident was not suspicious, Hamilton police are working with officials from the Hamilton Children’s Aid Society to look into whether to lay charges in the case.

“Hamilton Police Child Abuse Branch has received the investigation and is reviewing the file,” police spokeswoman Debbie McGreal-Dinning said in a Friday email to CBC Hamilton.

“Investigators are working in conjunction with the Children's Aid Society.”

The child remains in hospital in stable condition, she said. 

The fire caused $100,000 in damage, officials say. (Cory Ruf/CBC )

A CBC Hamilton reporter spoke with the boy’s parents when they checked up on their fire-gutted home around 4 p.m. on Thursday, after they talked with police.

The couple wouldn’t say why the boy was alone at the time of the fire.

“I don’t want comment on it,” said his mother, who would not give her name.

She said her son is recovering in the hospital.

“My son is OK, he’s fine.”

A woman who identified herself as a closed family friend said the child was in the care of a neighbour at the time of the fire.

“I guess she stepped out and then we got a phone call, ‘The house is on fire.’ And we were literally just up the street,” she said. “I guess the babysitter called and said the house was on fire.” 

Claudio Mostacci, a spokesperson with the Hamilton Fire Department, said the house sustained $100,000 in damage.

The cause of the fire has not yet been determined.

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