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Police identify victims of fatal Md. fire

By James Arkin,

A man and woman who died in a New Carrollton apartment fire Sunday night were identified by authorities Tuesday, but their relationship to the man who faces arson and murder charges in their deaths remained unclear.

Prince George’s County police said the victims were John M. Abbate, 45, of the 7600 block of Fontainebleau Drive — the same apartment complex at which the fire occurred — and Tanya Winston, 53, of the 8600 block of Leslie Avenue in Glenarden.

According to police, the suspect, Anthony Andre Allain, 44, barricaded himself and the victims in his apartment before starting the fire and jumping from a balcony to escape the flames. Police said officers found Allain later that night in the basement of a nearby apartment building.

Information on Allain, Winston and Abbate’s relationship was not disclosed by police Tuesday.

Allain was still being treated Tuesday at a District hospital for burn injuries that were not considered life-threatening, police said. He will be formally charged with first-degree arson and two counts of felony murder after he is released from the hospital and transferred to Prince George’s County, authorities have said.

The fire, which started about 7:45 p.m., erupted from the top floor of a four-story garden-style apartment. More than 50 people were displaced by the blaze.

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