Update: 55-year-old Relax Inn fire victim in critical condition at SUNY Upstate

WATERTOWN, NY —  The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office is assisting with an investigation into a structure fire at the Relax Inn in the Town of Watertown.

This morning at approximately 12:45am, Jefferson County Sheriff’s Deputies and State Troopers were dispatched to the Relax Inn for a third-party report of a disturbance in room 112.

Upon arrival Deputies briefly communicated with someone through the door at room 112, but the person stopped responding. With the assistance of the property manager, the door was opened and Deputies found the room to be full of smoke. Deputy Christian Hughes immediately entered the room and located an unresponsive victim in the bathroom.

With assistance from Troopers Joseph Fay and Sean Iles and Deputy Nick Curtiss, the victim was dragged outside.

With flames now visible in the room, Deputies and Troopers evacuated the remaining rooms and accounted for all tenants.

Multiple departments responded to extinguish the fire.

The victim, Robert W. Murphy age 55, was transported to SMC for treatment. He was later airlifted to SUNY Upstate and is in critical but stable condition. Deputy Hughes and Troopers Fay and Iles were also transported to SMC for treatment for smoke inhalation and were later released. Deputy Curtiss required no medical treatment.

The Jefferson County Office of Fire & Emergency Management, with the assistance of New York State Fire Investigators, are investigating the cause of the fire. No determination has been made at this time.

Agencies also assisting include: Adams Center Fire, Black River Ambulance, Brownville Fire, Glen Park Fire, Guilfoyle Ambulance, Rodman Fire, Rutland Fire, Sackets Harbor Fire, Smithville Fire, City of Watertown Fire, Town of Watertown Fire, and Town of Watertown Ambulance.

Detective Ben Timerman
Public Information Officer