UPDATE 5:35 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 1:
The Murrieta Police Department continued Thursday to put major resources toward investigating a suspicious death discovered when a fire broke out Wednesday in a Murrieta apartment.
While the investigation into the circumstances of the death in apartment V-103 at the Waterstone Apartments progresses, releasing specifics to the public through the media could jeopardize their work, Murrieta police Lt. Tony Conrad told Patch.
Authorities have not yet confirmed the identity of the victim, though a neighbor told Patch the person who lived there was a thin, African American woman.
"The Police Department is still awaiting official identification of the victim from the coroner's office," said Conrad, who oversees the department's detective bureau.
Patch has left inquiries with the Riverside County Sheriff-Coroner's Office, an employee of which said the body was "charred."
The fire was reported at 6:45 a.m. Wednesday. Fire and police officials arrived on scene within minutes to knock down the blaze. When searching for victims, a deceased body was found, authorities said. A 3- to 4-year-old boy was rescued by a neighbor, according to authorities.
As information becomes available, Murrieta Patch will continue to update this story.
UPDATE 5:45 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 31:
The crime scene at Waterstone Apartments in Murrieta was broken down at about 5:15 p.m. Wednesday, though Murrieta police would not be releasing further details in the case until at least tomorrow, Lt. Tony Conrad confirmed.
Mandatory evacuations of nearby apartment units were lifted, Conrad told Patch.
Murrieta police and fire investigators were on scene Wednesday of an alleged suspicious death in connection with a fire that broke out in a unit at Waterstone Apartments, 24850 Hancock Avenue in Murrieta.
The fire was reported at 6:45 a.m. and fire and police officials arrived at 6:49 a.m., according to Murrieta police Lt. Tony Conrad.
Authorities discovered apartment V-103 was "engulfed with smoke billowing from an open window," Conrad said, in a news release.
Firefighters entered the apartment and knocked out the fire. While searching for victims, they found a deceased woman, determined to be in her 30s, according to Murrieta fire Spokesperson Matt Corelli.
"The first crew arrived and found smoke and fire coming from three windows of a downstairs apartment," Corelli said in a news release. "Crews stopped the fire's progress and reported knockdown twelve minutes after they arrived."
Prior to crews' arrival, Corelli said a resident pulled a child from the apartment. The child, whose age was not provided, was treated by firefighter-paramedics at the scene and transported to a local hospital, he said.
One firefighter suffered injuries in the fire; he was expected to recover, Corelli said.
"Firefighters contained the fire to the unit were it began and remained on scene to check for nearby extension into other apartment units," Corelli said.
Based on preliminary investigation, police and fire officials have deemed the death suspicious.
"Murrieta police investigators along with investigators from Murrieta fire are on scene working this case as a suspicious death," Conrad said.
A large area surrounding the damaged apartment was cordoned off, and the Murrieta police and fire mobile command unit was brought to the scene.
Multiple detectives, firefighters and sheriff's personnel were on location.
Residents nearby were evacuated and unable to drive their cars if they were parked inside the taped-off area, Conrad confirmed.
A neighbor, Jessica Ewald, said she lived two doors down from the fire-ravaged apartment. She told Patch she was ordered not to drive her car, so she was borrowing her mother's.
She described the woman who lived there as thin and African American, though police have not confirmed her identity.
The investigation was expected to continue throughout the day, at which time more details may be released.
This story is developing. Stay with Patch for updates.