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FDNY comes across guns following fire

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Two East Elmhurst men were arrested Sunday after firefighters battling a minor blaze in a home they shared with about eight family members found two shotguns and a rifle, fire officials said.

Jason Clarke, 20, of 28−23 98th St., received a conditional discharge after pleading guilty to charges of firearms certificate of registration and permit for possession and purchase of rifles and shotguns, according to a spokeswoman for DA Richard Brown.

Clarke also pleaded guilty to criminal possession of marijuana after an officer found 26 bags of marijuana weighing a total of 25 grams in the police car Clarke was riding in when he was arrested, according to the criminal complaint filed by the DA’s office.

Caprise Scott, 33, was also arrested, but only received a violation, the spokeswoman said.

The fire broke out on the second floor of the two−story home at around 9:43 a.m. Sunday and was brought under control an hour later, fire officials said.

All of the occupants of the home got out safely, although one woman was seen with two deep cuts on the left side of her face.

One of the residents, who estimated there were 10 people living in the home, said he was eating breakfast when the fire erupted.

“I heard ‘fire’ and I ran out. The smoke was too thick. I didn’t bother to investigate,” said the resident, who did not want to give his name.

He said he was not aware of any weapons stashed inside the home.

A shotgun was found underneath a mattress in one of the home’s bedrooms, according to the criminal complaint. Clarke could not produce a permit for the gun, it said.

A city Department of Buildings employee at the scene filed violations on the home because he said its cellar was illegally converted.

Reach reporter Howard Koplowitz by e−mail at hkoplowitz@timesledger.com or by phone at 718−229−0300, Ext. 173.

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