A lone guard employed by York Security was there on night of Raleigh fire

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York Security enployed the lone security guard on site at the Metropolitan, which burned down Thursday night.

As federal investigators dig meticulously through charred rubble in search of what caused last week's downtown inferno at a construction site, the Raleigh Police Department is scaling back its presence around the scene, turning over individual buildings to the property owners.

The Quorum Center has hired Raleigh-based York Security to monitor its buildings that are still too dangerous for people to move back in.

WATCH: ABC11's Joel Brown reports business down, sense of community up
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Business is down, but a sense of community is up after the Raleigh fire.

ABC11 has learned the lone security guard on duty at the Metropolitan Apartments construction site the night of the fire also worked for York Security.

The company released the following statement to ABC11:

"The fire that occurred on March 16 at the Metropolitan Apartment construction site in Raleigh, North Carolina is undergoing an investigation by the State Bureau of Investigation and the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco Firearms and Explosives. Because this investigation is underway, we cannot comment beyond saying that we are working fully and cooperatively with the investigating authorities to support their review and determination of the cause of the fire. We are thankful for the heroic efforts of the many firefighters and first responders who put their lives at risk to address the fire. Our thoughts and prayers remain with area neighbors and surrounding communities affected by this fire as they work to rebuild their lives."

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ABC11 was at Raleigh's Windsor Falls Apartments on Tuesday night and obtained exclusive video of half a dozen ATF agents on the property.

A source close to the investigation said agents were searching a particular unit in connection with the fire.


ABC11 is also hearing from an eyewitness who says she was among the first to capture video of the fire as it started around 10 p.m. Thursday.

Nikki Carlson of Raleigh said she was pulling into downtown on Dawson St. when she saw flames shooting from one end of the structure as thick black smoke was billowing out of the other side facing Jones Street.

Shortly after Carlson posted her cell phone videos to YouTube, investigators contacted her.

On Wednesday, she said she met with two ATF agents who have been interviewing several eyewitnesses and analyzing their video footage as well.

Click here for complete coverage of the downtown Raleigh fire

"All I can tell them is where I was standing, what I saw, and then the timeframe," she said.

Carlson said investigators seemed to be focused on the timeline of events and where she thinks the fire started.

"Who knows? It was freezing cold, the air was dry, this is all wood, there's no sprinklers," said Carlson. "I would love to hear that this was just a freak accident."

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