Fire damage, photographed on Jan. 11, to a downtown apartment building which occurred late in the evening on Jan. 8. Zander Firth, 20, from Inuvik, was charged with the arson and is facing several other charges following his Jan. 12 court appearance. (Gabrielle Plonka/Yukon News)

Fire damage, photographed on Jan. 11, to a downtown apartment building which occurred late in the evening on Jan. 8. Zander Firth, 20, from Inuvik, was charged with the arson and is facing several other charges following his Jan. 12 court appearance. (Gabrielle Plonka/Yukon News)

More charges for arson suspect

The Inuvik man charged in relation to the fire at Ryder Apartments is facing additional charges following a court appearance on Jan. 12.

Zander Firth, 20, was initially charged with three counts of arson with intention to cause damage and bodily harm. He was also charged with four counts of breaching the conditions of a release order that included residing at his Inuvik home.

At his court appearance on Jan. 12, Firth was charged with three additional counts of arson damaging property he knew to be occupied and violating a no-contact order.

Firth is in custody and will appear in court again at the end of January.

Ryder Apartments is owned by the Yukon Housing Corp. Sarah Murray, corporation spokesperson, told the News in an email statement that the majority of building residents moved back into their apartment on Jan. 11.

“We are thankful that most of the apartments have been deemed safe and that the majority of the units were not damaged by the fire,” Murray said.

Two of the building’s apartments “are not safe or habitable for tenants,” she said.

The housing corporation is providing temporary housing for the tenants who have been permanently displaced. Murray said her team is working to find alternate units for those tenants.

Police responded to the scene of the fire shortly after 10 p.m. on Jan. 8. The apartment building, located near Sixth Avenue and Lambert Street downtown, was evacuated. Three people were in hospital with injuries, RCMP said.

Contact Gabrielle Plonka at gabrielle.plonka@yukon-news.com

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