blockitecture leaderboard

Architect Charged in Firefighter's Death

After a yearlong investigation into a fire at an $11-million mansion in the Hollywood Hills, Gerhard Albert Becker, the architect who designed the home, has been charged in the death of a firefighter fighting the blaze.

Richard Winton and Hector Becerra report on the results of the investigation, which concluded that, "Gerhard Albert Becker, 48, knowingly ignored safety recommendations and altered the home after inspections," and has been charged with involuntary manslaughter in the death of veteran firefighter Glenn Allen, who was killed by falling debris.

Becker, who plead not guilty to the charges, is accused of installing four outdoor fireplaces inside the home, a violation of city building codes, after the building had been inspected.

According to court records, "he [Becker] did not consider them to be fireplaces but rather architectural features or decorations." However, "This man built an 18-foot fire trough designed for outdoors inside the home. It was a recipe for disaster," added Deputy Dist. Atty. Sean Carney. "He essentially put this fireplace on 2-by-4s."

"The deadly fire broke out from a fireplace on the third floor, racing upward and through the mansion's attic, eating away at wood framing and supports holding up the ceiling," report Winton and Becerra

Full Story: Architect of Hollywood Hills mansion damaged in fire is charged in firefighter's death

Comments

building block set

NEW! Build the world you want to see

Irresistible block set for adults when placed on a coffee table or desk, and great fun for kids.
$25
Red necktie with map of Boston

For dads and grads: tie one on to celebrate your city!

Choose from over 20 styles imprinted with detailed city or transit maps.
$44.95
Wood necklace with city map

City Necklaces

These sweet pendants are engraved on a cedar charm with a mini map of selected cities. The perfect gift for friends and family or yourself!
$28.00

City Coasters

Hand-drawn engraved maps of your favorite neighborhoods are divided up across 4 coasters making each one unique.
$36.00