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Tag Archive | "Suspicious fires"

Bodies discovered after fires

Two suspicious fires and two bodies discovered in the ruins have led police to treat the investigation as a homicide. Courtesy photo from the Michigan State Police.

The Michigan State Police is investigating the possible homicide deaths of two people whose bodies were found after suspicious fires were extinguished southeast of Greenville last week.

At approximately 7:53 a.m. Thursday, March 18, Ronald Township Fire was dispatched to a structure fire in the 4200 block of West Fenwick Road, Fairplain Township, Montcalm County. Upon arrival, two homes on the property were on fire, one being fully engulfed. Sheridan Area Fire, Greenville DPS Fire, and Montcalm Township Fire were called in to assist. Once the structures were extinguished, it was determined that the first structure had been occupied and a body was discovered.

Detectives from the Michigan State Police Lakeview Post and MSP Fire Investigators were dispatched to the scene for an investigation. After several hours of investigation, a second body was discovered.  

One of the deceased individuals has been identified as Serafina Wyckoff, a 68-year-old woman who resided at the residence. Due to the intensity of the fire, DNA testing will be required to make a positive identification of the second victim.

Investigators have stated that this investigation is being treated as a homicide but there is no threat to the public.  The investigation continues and updates will be provided as they become available.

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Suspicious fires deemed arson

Four fires were set around 4 a.m. Monday morning in Mecosta and Montcalm counties. Fire photo taken by a resident.

A Howard City man has been arrested and police are seeking charges against two alleged accomplices in a string of suspicious fires and a break-in that occurred early Monday morning in Mecosta and Montcalm Counties.

According to the Mecosta County Sheriff Office, the Morley Area Fire Department was dispatched to a report of a structure fire located in northern Deerfield Township on Monday, October 1, at approximately 4:32 a.m. During the response several other fires were discovered in the immediate area. A total of three structure fires were found to have occurred in Deerfield Township, Mecosta County. There was also a fire and a break-in that took place in northern Montcalm County at the same time that the Mecosta County fires were happening.  

According to the Michigan State Police Lakeview Post, the Montcalm incidents occurred in Reynolds and Winfield Townships.

Multiple surrounding fire departments responded to the fires, including, Lakeview Fire, Mecosta Twp. Fire, Morton Twp. Fire, Big Rapids Twp. Fire, Big Rapids Department of Public Safety Fire Division, Big Prairie fire in Newaygo County, and Maple Valley Fire in Montcalm county.  

The Mecosta County Sheriff’s Office was also notified and the Mecosta County Fire Investigation Team was also requested and responded. There were no  reported injuries and all of the structures were unoccupied.    

The Michigan State Police Fire Investigation Unit also responded and investigated the Montcalm County fire. 

The investigation revealed that around 4 a.m. on 10-1-18 the three suspects drove to the locations, gained entry into the buildings, and purposely started all four fires. They also attempted to break into a residence where the owner was asleep. The resident awoke to the sound of the door being kicked in. He yelled at the suspects who then fled from the scene.

A joint investigation led to the identification of three suspects involved in these incidents. Those involved include an 18-year-old female from Morley; a 20-year-old male from Howard City; and a 32-year-old from Howard City. The 32-year-old was arrested for an outstanding warrant while warrants are being sought for the other two suspects.  

The Mecosta County Sheriff’s Office is asking anyone that saw anything suspicious to contact the Mecosta County Sheriff’s Office at 231-592-0150 or tips@mecostacounty.org, or call the Lakeview Post at 989-352-9444.

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Ray Winnie
Intandem Credit Union


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