Police: Fire in Albertson 'suspicious'

Firefighters from seven Nassau County fire departments battled an early morning house fire in Albertson on Tuesday that police said is being investigated as suspicious. Videojournalist: Paul Mazza (July 24, 2012)

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Firefighters from seven Nassau County fire departments battled an early morning house fire in Albertson Tuesday that police said is being investigated as suspicious.

Four people who were in the home on Foxcroft Road when the fire began about 1:50 a.m. were able to escape without injury, police said.

Residents of a neighboring home said they fled, too, fearing the fire might spread.

Nassau police said arson and bomb squad detectives are looking into the cause of the blaze, but declined to provide details.

Neighbors said they awakened to see the front door of the home on fire.

Jennifer Murphy, 42, who lives across from the home, said the fire spread quickly -- and she could feel the heat from across the street.

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Another neighbor, Jennifer Balme, 38, said she was alerted to the fire when she heard a teenage boy who lives in the house screaming. Balme said that, hearing those screams, she grabbed her two children, ages 2 and 4, and she and her husband fled their home.

"We just got out without shoes or anything," she said.

More than 150 firefighters from Albertson, Williston Park, East Williston, Roslyn, Carle Place, Mineola and Westbury battled the blaze, police said.

Police are asking anyone with information about the fire to call Crime Stoppers at 800-244-TIPS. All calls will remain confidential, police said.

The American Red Cross on Long Island said it provided funds for food and clothing to the home's occupants, but said the four opted to stay with relatives instead of accepting shelter from the organization.

Earlier in the week the Red Cross helped residents of two other fires in Nassau -- one a house in Cedarhurst, the other an apartment building in Hempstead.

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