Man accused of setting massive apartment fire to face judge

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The man accused of setting a massive fire at an east Charlotte apartment complex that left 130 people without a home will face a judge Friday.

[PAST COVERAGE: Investigators searching for Charlotte apartment arsonist]

Jesus Reyes Lopez, 20, is charged with two counts of attempted first-degree murder, first-degree arson and damage to property by use of an incendiary device.

(Jesus Reyes Lopez)

The 20-year-old smiled as Eyewitness News reporter Glenn Counts asked him about his suspected actions that displaced families and children.

Lopez targeted an ex-girlfriend, and his act of revenge went out of control, sources said.

Sources also said there is an immigration detainer on Lopez, which means he is undocumented.

The three-alarm fire started around 1 a.m. Monday at Woodscape Apartments on Farm Pond Lane displaced 130 people and caused about $1.3 million in damage, according to police.

People were jumping off second- and third-floor balconies to escape the fire.

A 38-year-old mother, who didn’t want to be identified, cried when talking about her three-story jump from the inferno.

She wanted to get to the ground to catch her 4-year-old daughter.

Her husband tossed the girl to his wife below.

"She didn't want to jump,” a witness said. ‘I don't want to jump, I'm very scared.’ Her mom kept saying, ‘If you don't jump, you can get hurt. You are going to burn.’"

A Red Cross shelter has been set up at Albemarle Road Middle School for families who have been displaced. The agency is providing financial assistance for food, clothing, lodging and other essentials, along with comfort kits containing personal hygiene items.

[HOW TO HELP: Families displaced by 3-alarm fire in Charlotte]

Red Cross caseworkers are meeting with families one-on-one to help them find a temporary home and other resources.

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