Police: Fire that killed 3 people was arson - WNEM TV 5

Police: Fire that killed 3 people was arson

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1317 E. Lake Road in Genesee County (Courtesy: Mary Gray) 1317 E. Lake Road in Genesee County (Courtesy: Mary Gray)
1317 E. Lake Road in Genesee County (Source: WNEM) 1317 E. Lake Road in Genesee County (Source: WNEM)
1317 E. Lake Road in Genesee County (Courtesy: Mary Gray) 1317 E. Lake Road in Genesee County (Courtesy: Mary Gray)
1317 E. Lake Road in Genesee County (Source: WNEM) 1317 E. Lake Road in Genesee County (Source: WNEM)
Caption: 1317 E. Lake Road in Genesee County (Courtesy: Mary Gray) Caption: 1317 E. Lake Road in Genesee County (Courtesy: Mary Gray)
THETFORD TOWNSHIP, MI (WNEM) -

Thetford Township Police Chief Robert Kenny confirmed a fire that killed three people on April 14 was the result of arson.

Jackene and Carl Buchler and Eloise Woolley were killed when the Thetford Township home exploded.

"They said there was an explosion there, but I never dreamed it would be these people. I never dreamed it in my lifetime," said a man known in the neighborhood as Cowboy Paul.

He said he's been friends with the Buchlers for years.

Neighbors in the Genesee County area reported hearing and feeling an explosion followed by a series of blasts that sent ash and debris onto their homes, shortly before noon.

"I saw all the billowing black smoke. And then I went in the house and my wife said she heard the first explosion and it kind of shook our house a little bit," said Lauren Wager, neighbor.

Kenny said the K-9 team for the Michigan State Police hit on three different accelerant spots. But said all the victims died from smoke inhalation and burns.

"It's definitely weird being across the road from this," said Anthony Carlton, neighbor. "The people that passed away, they just didn't deserve that. They were just really nice people, kind-hearted. It makes me upset knowing that somebody did that."

Right now there is no motive or suspects.

Copyright 2016 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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