Edmonton

Woman's body found after house fire

Homicide detectives are investigating the scene of a house fire in west Edmonton after a woman’s body was found inside.
Police and fire rescue services were called out to the scene of a house fire in west Edmonton early Wednesday morning. A woman's body was found inside the home. (Lydia Neufeld/CBC)

Homicide detectives are investigating the scene of a house fire in west Edmonton after a woman’s body was found inside.

Firefighters were called out to a single-family home at 173rd Street and 77th Avenue just after 2 a.m. Wednesday.

“When Edmonton fire arrived on scene, they found a bungalow with heavy smoke and flame and were quick to do a search and rescue. We can confirm at this time that there is one female deceased,” said spokeswoman Shani Gwin.

Firefighters then did a second search of the home but no one else was found.

“I know the fire was not contained to one [room] but at this time, I don’t have a lot of details on that,” said Gwin. “We were able to get the fire under control by 3:25 a.m.”

Gwin said fire investigators were expected to remain on scene throughout the day, along with EPS detectives.

Officials have not yet named the victim, but neighbour Debbie de Boer said she was shocked to hear the death was being treated as a homicide.

 "It's horrible, it's just not right,” she said Wednesday morning.

De Boer described her neighbour as a small woman in her mid-30s who had difficulty walking.

“I know she suffered from MS. She struggled to shovel her walks and mow her lawns and everything and she was just a little spit of a thing,” she said. “She was very friendly, you know, she always waved, always said ‘hi.’”

De Boer said her neighbour had lived alone, but had taken in boarders from time to time – typically, young men.

Fire investigators say they don’t know yet what caused the fire. 

With files from CBC's Lydia Neufeld

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