(RIVERSIDE, Calif.) — Police are investigating an apparent triple homicide after three people were found dead in a Southern California residence by firefighters responding to a fire in the home.
Officers with the Riverside Police Department were in the process of responding to the home, located on the 1000 block of Price Court, to conduct a welfare check Friday morning, following the report of a “disturbance” between a man and woman near a car, police said.
“Shortly after that, before [officers] arrived, the fire department responded for what appeared to be a fire” at the same location, Riverside Police Officer Ryan Railsback told reporters during a press briefing Friday night. “When they went inside to extinguish that fire, that’s when they discovered the three bodies.”
A man and two women were found deceased inside the home, though police believe they were already dead before the fire broke out.
“They were victims of homicide, although we’re not going to disclose the means of that at this point,” Railsback said.
The coroner’s office was still in the process of identifying the victims Friday night and did not have their ages.
The woman involved in the earlier disturbance was found in San Bernardino County and was “safe” with law enforcement, Railsback said. The whereabouts of the man involved in the dispute were not disclosed.
The investigation is ongoing and there were no updates Saturday.
“This case is complicated and detectives are still unraveling it,” Railsback told ABC News. “We are hopeful to provide some update in the upcoming days.”
Riverside is located about 55 miles east of downtown Los Angeles.
Neighbors watched the incident unfold.
“Firemen were trying to extinguish it, they got there really early. Next thing you know they’re pulling out some bodies,” a neighbor, Myron Dinga, told ABC Los Angeles station KABC. “It didn’t appear that they were succumbed by fire.”
“It was just smoke everywhere. You couldn’t breathe,” another neighbor, Brandi Kornegay, told the station.
Rick Beavers told KABC he saw the flames in the garage.
“The flames were six-foot high inside the garage,” he told the station. “The day after Thanksgiving, it is kind of sad.”
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