Today, Hamilton County Prosecutor Joseph T. Deters announced the indictment of Jamal Rashid (DOB 10/08/84) for 2 counts of Murder (Special Felony), 3 counts of Aggravated Arson (Felony 1), 1 count of Aggravated Arson (Felony 2), 2 counts of Felonious Assault (Felony 2) and 1 count of Arson (Felony 4). If convicted of all counts, he faces the possibility of 18 years- life in prison.
On November 19, 2019 at approximately 7:30 a.m., the Cincinnati Fire Department responded to a reported fire with people trapped inside at a 2 story apartment building located at 3205 Gobel Avenue. Once the firefighters arrived, they called in a second unit due to the intensity of the fire.
The intentional fire was set near the entrance to the apartment building directly in front of and on the only stairway to the second floor. Some residents were able to escape with the aid of firefighters and without injury. However, two 2nd floor occupants had to jump from their windows to escape the blaze. One resident broke her leg in the fall and the other resident suffered leg and back injuries. A first floor occupant, unable to escape, suffered 2nd and 3rd degree burns and smoke inhalation and died as a result of his injuries.
The Hamilton County Coroner ruled his death a homicide.
The Cincinnati Fire Department and Cincinnati Police Department investigated and determined that gasoline was present at the scene of the intentionally set fire. Continuing investigation led to today’s indictment of the defendant who was himself a resident of the apartment building.
Hamilton County Prosecutor Joseph T. Deters commented, “Thank you to the Cincinnati Police and Fire Department heroes who respond to these chaotic scenes and do the lifesaving work that they do. Sadly, two people were injured in this fire and one person died. The man who died suffered for 6 days in the hospital with serious burns and smoke inhalation before succumbing to his injuries.
Fortunately, the investigation led to today’s indictment and arrest of the defendant. People who set fires are dangerous and need to be off the streets for the protection of the community.”