Sheriff's deputies in Washington state say a 26-year-old man is the prime suspect in the killings of his two elderly grandparents, who were found dead in there home over the weekend.
Deputies responded Sunday evening to a reported house fire near the unincorporated community of Vaughn, Washington, the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department wrote on Facebook. Vaughn is south of the city of Seattle.
The house was fully engulfed by the time officials arrived on the scene, authorities said, with witnesses reporting hearing an explosion earlier. But while investigating the scene, deputies discovered two dead people in the building's basement, according to local outlet KIRO.
"As Key Peninsula Fire Department worked to control the fire, they discovered a deceased man and woman in the basement of the home. Deputies searched the home and observed evidence in the house that indicated a homicide and arson had occurred, and determined that a vehicle was missing from the house," authorities said on Facebook.
Investigators learned the residents of the home included a 71-year-old male, a 73-year-old female, and their 26-year-old grandson — determining the grandson had vanished from the scene with the car and prompting a search.
The suspect and the victims have not been publicly identified by the sheriff's department.
Overnight, the missing vehicle was found near an apartment complex where the grandson's girlfriend lived. The man was taken into custody early Monday morning by a responding SWAT team called in to assist with the investigation, the sheriff's department said.
The 26-year-old was charged with two counts of murder and was booked into the Pierce County Jail.
Detectives and forensic investigators are currently investigating the scene of the blaze with assistance from the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Fire Marshals Office, the sheriff's department announced.
Authorities are continuing their investigation.
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