CHA records show stove replaced one month before victim found dead of carbon monoxide poisoning

CPD investigation into Allen Benedict Court coming to a close

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - Newly released records from the Columbia Housing Authority show the stove in 30-year-old Derrick Roper’s apartment was replaced five weeks before he was found dead of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Maintenance records show the stove was replaced in Roper’s unit, J1, on December 11, 2018. Similarly, those records show the stove in 61-year-old Calvin Witherspoon Jr.'s unit, J3, was replaced in March 2013.

The stove within Unit J2, where Columbia fire officials found the highest concentration of multiple toxic gases, was replaced in April 2017.

The Columbia Housing Authority said it does not maintain records of other fuel-burning appliances within its units, including hot water heaters and furnaces. CHA officials said the agency only keeps records related to stoves because they are considered fixed assets.

WIS requested the year, make, and model of the stoves within the units prior to their replacement. The housing authority, through an attorney, said it is checking on our request.

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