Investigation continues in DC rowhouse fire that killed 80-year- - KMSP-TV

Investigation continues in DC rowhouse fire that killed 80-year-old woman

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WASHINGTON -

A team of investigators, including homicide, returned to the Petworth rowhouse where the body of an elderly woman was discovered by firefighters early Thursday morning.

80-year-old Lucille Proctor was found just after 5:30 a.m. on the second floor of the house she shared with her husband, Robert.

Neighbors say the couple has lived in the house in the 4600 block of 4th Street for at least the last 40 years. They are a Petworth fixture and have been very friendly with many of their neighbors.

When the fire broke out, Robert Proctor wasn't inside the house and only showed up hours later, telling friends and family he had been at the post office.

He has been questioned by police, but as of Friday evening, no charges had been filed.

A neighbor shoveling snow says he heard the distinct sound of burning wood and looked up to see the Proctors’ house on fire.

Although no one in the tight knit neighborhood would go on camera, many people who live here shared what they saw and heard and told police.

Now investigators are trying to piece together those stories with what they are finding inside the house.

Just after 11 a.m. Friday, a homicide detective arrived to confer with arson investigators trying to determine the cause.

They brought in lights, boxes of equipment and spent hours inside the house.

Neighbors who know the Proctors say Lucille proctor had serious health issues and her husband, Robert, was frequently "confused" as one friend put it.

Several neighbors described an angry confrontation between Robert Proctor and his grandson when Robert suddenly showed up at the house. The two had to be separated by police.

Sources familiar with the investigation say they can find "no apparent accidental cause."

Neighbors also wondered what Robert Proctor was doing outside the house before dawn in the driving snow. They said he does not own a car.

Proctor told his friends he had been at the post office, but they all noted the post office would not have been open at that hour.


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