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Myers neighbors recount fire that started off shooting spree

By JOLEEN FERRIS

MOHAWK, N.Y. (WKTV) - As 64-year-old gunman Kurt Myers started his first-floor apartment on fire at 32 South Washington Street in Mohawk, an eight-month-old baby girl slept in the apartment above his.

"We both kind of looked at each other like, 'do you smell that?' and I was like, 'yeah' and we were like, 'what is it? It's not gas, it kind of smells like acetone'", said Kaitlin Lape, mother of eight-month-old Cameron. Lape's boyfriend knocked on downstairs neighbor Kurt Meyers' door to find out where the smell was coming from.

"Trying to figure out what he was doing, he said, 'cleaning', and slammed the door and basically told me right where to go," says David Irla.

The young family fell asleep. Thankfully, not for long.

"I woke up around nine and I was looking and it looked hazy and I wasn't sure if i was just in a fog and I realized it was smoke so I woke him up immediately and we just ran out of the house," said Lape, adding, "I feel really lucky to be alive because I think, personally I think he was trying to blow the building up."

Downstairs tenant Justin Price works nights and would normally be sound asleep at 9:30 in the morning. But the morning of the fire, he was awake, outside the apartment house.

"Mr. Myers, he pulled out with his Jeep, he looked back at me, he gave me a, like a smirk, and I never really had too much contact with him so I thought that to be kind of funny. And then he squealed his tires and he went down the road," said Price, who lost more than material things in the fire.

"I'm looking at my neighbors going, 'ok, I'm going to go meet these people right now and get this over with because it's a scary thought. I don't want to live next to anybody like this again."

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