New Evidence Released in Stamford Christmas Day Fire

Carpenters working on the home claim Madonna Badger's boyfriend knew the home was a "fire trap"

NBC Connecticut has obtained documents, 911 calls and photos connected to the investigation into a Stamford house fire on Christmas Day 2011 that killed three little girls and their grandparents.

Among the evidence, which pieces together what investigators have learned about the tragic fire, are allegations two carpenters who worked at the house made claiming that Madonna Badger's then-boyfriend and contractor, Michael Borcina, knew the house was a fire trap.

"In spite of our expressed concerns about fire safety, Mike Borcina ignored our warnings about the excessive ‘fire fuel load’ he was creating,” the letter Andrew Grunow and Don Raskopf wrote to Stamford police says, in part.

They went on to say that Borcina allowed the Badger family to move into a structure that was under construction, had many windows secured shut and lacked fire safety equipment, a phone system and an alarm system.”

NBC Connecticut reached out to Borcina's attorney for comment and he issued a statement.

"[Mr. Borcina] maintains the work was done in an appropriate and safe fashion, despite the fact that there was a terrible tragedy."

The documents released, in response to a Freedom of Information Request from NBC Connecticut, also reveal what firefighters encountered while trying to save the family.  

"Give me another alarm on this. They've got trapped victims on the second floor," one emergency worker said the recordings.

Also in those recordings is the difficulty firefighters had trying to get to victims on the second floor.

“We’ve got victims trapped on the second floor. We’re going into rescue mode,” one of the recordings says.

Seven-year-old twins Grace and Sarah, 9-year-old Lily, and their grandparents were killed in the blaze.

Madonna Badger and Borcina were the only survivors.

The fire that caused so much damage is believed to have started in the mudroom, which is one of the many rooms under renovation.

Records state that workers put smoke detectors by the stairs on each floor, but Raskopf and Grunow claim that Borcina had the smoke detectors taken down so painters could do their work.

"The family lived in the house with this equipment on site, but not available for use," the letter from Grunow and Raskopf says. 

Last year, the Connecticut State's Attorney decided not to prosecute anyone in the case.

However, several civil suits have been filed.

Madonna Badger filed one claiming the city of Stamford tore the home down too quickly in an effort to cover up mistakes the building department made.

That case is supposed to be trial ready next year.

Contact Us