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Weekend house fire kills 4 in Cullman County

PHELAN, Ala. (AP) - An early morning house fire killed four people and injured seven others outside Cullman over the weekend.

The fire started at about 6 a.m. Saturday in Phelan, just off Highway 31.

Killed in the blaze were 3-year-old Jessica Norris, 11-year-old Nicole Allison May, 32-year-old Rita Ann Norris and 38-year-old Billy Joe Norris.

Among the injured, Thelma Norris, 34, was airlifted to UAB Hospital. A spokeswoman said she remained in critical condition Sunday afternoon.

Cullman County Sheriff Tyler Roden says the fire was likely started by a small space heater placed too close to a bed.

Cullman County Coroner Gary Murphree said the cause of death appeared to be smoke inhalation and thermal burns.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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