Foul play is suspected in a farmhouse fire early Tuesday at 49625 Peck Wadsworth Rd., Brighton Township, where the burned body of a man was discovered.
Now an investigation has been launched to find whether it’s a case of homicide.
A 911 call at 5:58 a.m. sent fire engines screaming to the home.
“We arrived on scene nine minutes after 6 a.m. to find the house about 50 percent involved in fire,” said Wellington fire chief Mike Wetherbee.
It took his crew about 45 minutes to extinguish the flames. Wetherbee initially responded with 12 to 15 firefighters, two engines, one tanker, and the rescue trucks.
The fire district also received mutual aide from Wakeman, Rochester, LaGrange, and Camden.
With flames doused, searchers were sent inside.
They found the victim in a bedroom on the first floor.
Investigators said they are not certain yet as to the deceased person’s identity. It appears to be an adult man.
According to county property records, Carolyn Zaffer owns the home.
The cause of the fire is unknown and being investigated by the Lorain County Sheriff’s Office detective bureau and the county coroner’s office.
Wetherbee said he contacts the sheriff’s office anytime his crew finds someone dead on a scene.
While deputies investigated, they uncovered areas of the property that were “suspicious in nature,” according to a written statement from the sheriff’s office.
The detective bureau and Lt. Heath Tester didn’t immediately respond to calls seeking more information.
Wetherbee and his crew headed back to the station around 1:15 p.m. He said due to the old age of the house the fire district did an extensive overhaul of the property to make sure the fire was completely out.
The house is a total loss and only 50 to 60 percent of it remains standing.
Kelsey Leyva can be reached at 400-647-3171 or @TWE_KelseyLeyva on Twitter.
Kelsey Leyva | Wellington Enterprise Wellington firefighters responded a second time Tuesday afternoon to 49625 Peck Wadsworth Rd. after a fire destroyed 40 to 50 percent of the home earlier in the day. The reason for the return visit has not yet been made clear.
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