On Sunday, June 7, 2009, the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office responded to a suspicious house fire at 238 N.W. Bagel Court, Lake City, FL.
At approximately 8:30 a.m., a neighbor called 911 to report the structure fire. Upon extinguishing the fire, the body of a female was discovered inside the burned structure. Columbia County Fire Dept personnel immediately notified the Sheriff’s Office that the victim had been discovered.
Deputies and detectives from the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office responded to the scene and a homicide investigation was started. Law enforcement treats all unattended deaths as a homicide until proven otherwise.
Investigators from the State Fire Marshals Office were notified and responded to the scene. The Fire Marshal Investigators are investigating the fire cause and origin and are working closely with the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office Detectives.
An autopsy was completed on Monday at the Medical Examiner’s Office in Jacksonville, FL. The medical examiner has initially labeled the death as homicide. The victims name is not being released at this time.
A person of interest has been located in Polk County, FL and is currently in custody on unrelated charges. The person of interest resided at the home and was not present when the Fire Dept arrived. Detectives from the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office are in Polk County conducting further investigations.
This is an open and active homicide investigation. Additional details will be released upon completion of this investigation.