ADA COUNTY, Idaho, Sept. 29, 2017 (Gephardt Daily) — Idaho investigators who searched the charred ruins of a residence that burned after an armed home invasion have found evidence that answered one of their questions.
From all indications, the man who beat down the door and ran in with a gun died inside the house. Officials strongly believe the body found is that of the suspect, but the official confirmation will come from the medical examiner’s office.
“Deputies who set up a perimeter around the home did not see the armed man get out,” said a blog post by the Ada County Sheriff’s Office. “The remains of a man were later found inside the house near where he was last seen.”
Fire crews from Meridian and Kuna cities “… arrived shortly after the fire began but were limited in what they could do since the man with the gun was still suspected to be inside the home,” the blog says.
The incident began at about 10:30 p.m. Wednesday when a female resident of the home called officials to say she heard pounding at the door and could hear someone trying to break in, and she didn’t know who it was.
Kuna Police and sheriff’s deputies arrived moments later and found a man, holding a long gun, coming out of the home. A verbal confrontation ensued. Deputies told the man several times to put the gun down, but he refused.
A short time later, deputies fired at the man. He went back inside the home and refused to come out. It is unknown whether the man was struck by bullets or whether he fired the gun he was carrying, the Ada County Sheriff’s statement said.
Within 15 minutes of first responders’ arrival, the house was on fire. Two residents made it out, but the third, an elderly woman, did not. The surviving residents were transported to a local hospital, and one was later transported to the University of Utah’s Burn Center.
The home was a total loss, and the embers made it too hot to begin a body search early on Thursday.
“The extent of the water, smoke and fire damage to the home made the collection of evidence — and the removal of human remains from inside — a long and complex process Thursday,” the post says.
The Boise Police Department will lead the investigation because of the deputies’ use of deadly force.
As to the question of how the house burst into flames so quickly, the Ada County Sheriff’s statement said there is some evidence that gasoline may have been used.
And one major question about the suspect — his motivation — remains completely unanswered, according to the sheriff’s statement:
Officials “… have not found any connection between him and the family who lived at the home.”