Fire at Whitehaven apartments was intentionally set, investigators say

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A local apartment complex caught fire late Monday night in Whitehaven.

Fire investigators said the fire was determined to be intentionally set.

Memphis Fire officials said the blaze happened around 10 p.m., and they received multiple calls about apartments on fire.

PHOTOS: Views from the scene of the devastating fire at Whitehaven apartments

The blaze happened at the Peppertree Apartments in the 4200 block of Eastwind Drive.

Heavy fire was visible from the two-story apartment building when crews arrived, MFD said.

Fire investigators said the origin and cause of the fire was determined to be intentionally set on the patio of apartment #7.

The fire spread from the apartment complex to an adjacent building, MFD said.

One woman was injured after jumping from the second floor. She was taken to Regional One in stable condition.

No firefighters were injured.

Resident KJ Patterson said she lost something in the fire that he had wanted to keep close to her as long as she lived - the ashes of her son.

The ashes were left inside the scorched building as firefighters worked to put out the blaze.

Patterson said her son died last year after someone killed him.

“I’m messed up in the inside,” she said. “I was just trying to heal. Even though I can’t heal yet. Now I’m all the way messed up.”

Patterson’s neighbors said they had little time to get out after someone woke them up banging on their door when the fire began.

“All I could do was break and run,” one said. “Somebody gave me a shirt and a pair of shoes. That’s all I had when I came out the door.”

Several people who lived in the building said there’s no telling if or when they’ll be able to see any of their possessions again.

MFD is working to determine how residents will need assistance and whether the apartment complex has alternate units for those impacted by the blaze.

At least nine families were displaced, MFD said.

Two buildings (4246 & 4252 Eastwind) and a total of ten apartments sustained smoke, fire, and water damage.

MFD said the fire is still under investigation. Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 528-CASH or the State Arson Hotline at 1-800-762-3017.