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Artists’ warehouse founder City visited, had no complaints

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OAKLAND, Calif. — The founder of an artists’ collective in a San Francisco area warehouse that caught fire two years ago, killing 36, said Tuesday that police, fire and other officials who visited his home never notified him it might be a fire hazard.

Derick Almena took the stand in his defense for the second day. He faces 36 counts of involuntary manslaughter along with co-defendant Max Harris.

Prosecutors say Almena stuffed the so-called Ghost Ship warehouse in the city of Oakland with highly flammable materials that made it nearly impossible for attendees of a Dec. 2, 2016, electronic music party to escape.

But defense attorney Tony Serra repeatedly asked Almena about instances in which fire, police and other city officials toured inside the two-story home and never said anything about its dangers.

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