One of victims in abandoned Yakima house fire dies

YAKIMA — One of two men pulled from a burning abandoned house in Yakima two weeks ago has died from his injuries.

Michael Cartwright, 34, died Wednesday at Seattle’s Harborview Medical Center, where he had been hospitalized since the Feb. 1 fire on North Fifth Avenue, a spokeswoman for the King County Medical Examiner’s Office said Thursday.

Cause of death was smoke inhalation, the spokesperson said.

Cartwright was one of two men seriously injured in the blaze. Fire officials said the two-story house at 402 N. Fifth Ave., about a block north of the Fifth Avenue Safeway, had been abandoned for years.

Fire officials previously declined to release the names of either victim, and the condition of the second injured man remains unclear.

The status of an investigation into the cause of the fire also remains unknown. Yakima Fire Department officials could not immediately be reached for comment.

The two injured men were among a group of at least four people living in the abandoned home, authorities have said.

One woman was pulled from the fire and a third man was detained for questioning after he was caught trying to flee the scene.