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Authorities investigating North Plainfield fatal fire

North Plainfield, NJ

Post Date:05/16/2019 4:00 PM

May 16, 2019- NEWS RELEASE

Somerset County Prosecutor Michael H. Robertson, Chief of County Detectives John W. Fodor, and North Plainfield Police Chief William Parenti announced that authorities are investigating the circumstances surrounding a fatal fire that occurred on Grove Street, North Plainfield, New Jersey.    

Prosecutor Robertson stated that at approximately 2:48 a.m. on May 16, 2019, the North Plainfield Police Department received a 9-1-1 call reporting a structure fire on Grove Street. Upon arrival, several people notified first responders that a female was still in the home. Estefanie Brizuela-Garcia, a twenty-two year old female was discovered within residence and was later pronounced dead. A twenty-three year old male resident in the home was transported to Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Somerset for smoke inhalation and non-life threatening burns to his back. Seven additional residents, ranging in age from three to forty-two years of age, were able to safely exit the single-family residence.

Prosecutor Robertson stated that the Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crimes Unit and the Fire Investigation Unit responded to conduct an investigation into the cause and origin of the fire, in conjunction with the North Plainfield Police Department. Investigators from the Northern Regional Medical Examiner’s Office also responded to the scene and a post-mortem examination will be conducted to determine the cause and manner of death.

Prosecutor Robertson, Chief Fodor, and North Plainfield Police Chief William Parenti stated that it is an active investigation and request anyone with information to contact the Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office at (908) 231-7100, or the North Plainfield Police Department at 908-769-2937 or via the STOPit app. The STOPit app allows citizens to provide anonymous reports including videos and photos. STOPit can be downloaded to your smart phone for free at the Google Play Store or Apple App Store, access code: SOMERSETNJ. Information can also be provided through the Somerset County Crime Stoppers’ Tip Line at 1-888-577-TIPS (8477) or online at or at and click on either “Crime Stoppers” or “TIPS HOTLINE”. All anonymous Crime Stopper tips will be kept confidential.           

Note: The following information is based on a preliminary and ongoing investigation, which continues to evolve as investigators interview witnesses, review physical and electronic records, and analyze forensic evidence.  The Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office’s understanding of the facts and circumstances may change as additional evidence is collected and analyzed.


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