Autopsy to Determine Identity of Fire Death Victim

September 13, 2007
Dwayne Page

A body found in the charred rubble of a home burned to the ground Thursday has been sent to Nashville for an autopsy by the State Medical Examiner to determine the identity and the cause of death.

In the meantime, Sheriff Patrick Ray says his department has set up the Critical Incident Response Mobile Command Trailer at the location until the on scene investigation has been completed. Investigators from the Sheriff's Department, State Fire Marshal's Office, TBI, and State Bomb and Arson Squad began sifting through the debris Thursday until dark and will resume the task Friday morning looking for clues as to what started the fire, and to determine if there was any foul play associated with it.

DeKalb County Fire Chief Donny Green says the fire was reported around 7:43 a.m. Thursday morning by neighbors who spotted the blaze coming from the residence of 625 Tranquility Way, located near Center Hill Lake, off Holiday Haven Drive.

Officials fear that the body found in the rubble is that of a disabled man who lived alone at that residence, but authorities will not reveal his name until identification of the body has been established.

Green says the home was fully engulfed in flames by the time it was discovered and firefighters were unable to save it. The garage next to the house was also destroyed in the blaze along with a pickup truck parked inside.

Members of the Cookeville Highway Station, the Main Station at King Ridge Road, the Midway Station, and Tanker truck all responded to the fire along with DeKalb EMS, the Sheriff's Department, and the Tennessee Forestry Division.

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