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ALTON - Alton Fire Chief Jesse Jemison sadly announced a woman and pet dog both died at the scene of a tragic fire in the 1600 block of Nolte Place, just off Washington Avenue in Alton early Thursday morning.

Fire Chief Jemison said the fire did not appear to be suspicious, but the state fire marshal had been called to investigate the situation. The Madison County Coroner’s Office also had a representative at the scene. The fire call came in at 5:50 a.m. and the Alton Fire Department, joined by the East Alton Fire Department, had the fire under control by 6:30 a.m. Thursday.

Chief Jemison also said he believed smoke inhalation was what tragically caused the woman's death, but he said the State Fire Marshal’s Office and coroner ultimately would determine the cause.

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The fire chief said when firefighters arrived, the home was fully engulfed with flames. Once the fire was under control, he said the woman and dog were discovered deceased.

“The fire appears to have started in the basement and then spread upstairs,” Chief Jemison said.

The fire chief said the woman was in her 60s and appeared to live alone with the dog in the home.

Alton Police Chief Marcos Pulido said: “For now, this doesn’t seem to be criminal in nature.”

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