CENTENNIAL, Colo. (CBS4) – A 23-year-old woman charged with setting a fire at an apartment complex that injured eight people allegedly wanted her ex-girlfriend’s new boyfriend dead.
Naomi Almodovar went before a judge in Arapahoe County on Monday. She’s set to be formally charged later this week with igniting the June 23 fire at the Copper Terrace Apartments in Centennial.
The judge raised the bond amount in Almodovar’s case to $1 million.
Assistant District Attorney Mark Hurlbert stressed that the defendant is presumed innocent, but that “given the crimes, we felt that she was a danger to this community and that’s why we asked for a raised bond in this case.”
“We are looking at filing several counts, up to 40 counts, of attempted first-degree murder, extreme indifference,” Hurlbert said.
Eight people were injured in the fire and some were forced to leap off balconies to escape the flames. Others climbed down bedding as neighbors rescued other neighbors.
“The screams from people was awful, the noise was awful. I’m still having flashbacks of the fire and how devastating it was,” resident Lenise Brown said.
It was just days before Brown’s wedding. The new bride says the fire could have been deadly and was surprised someone would intentionally set it.
Investigators say Almodovar’s ex-girlfriend lived in the building. According to court documents, Almodovar was upset with the woman. They had allegedly been together for years, but about a week before the fire the ex-girlfriend posted on Facebook she was in a new relationship. It allegedly sent the suspect into a rage.
The arrest affidavit states that an accelerant was found outside of a second floor apartment belonging to the ex-girlfriend. It also states that a friend of Almodovar’s helped her put gas in a can the day before the fire.
It also alleges that there were previous incidents involving the two women where Almadovar acted violently towards her ex-girlfriend and that woman’s new boyfriend.
“It makes me sad that she felt like she had to go to those extreme measures and wasn’t thinking about everyone living in that apartment and how they could have been affected,” Brown said.
Almadovar’s family came to the Arapahoe County Courthouse for her court hearing on Monday. They declined interviews, but in the court documents the suspect’s mother said Almadovar may be dealing with some mental health issues or substance abuse issues and has been feeling more depressed than usual because of the breakup.
Almodovar’s next court appearance is on Thursday.
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