AP NEWS

Grandson arrested in death of man found in burned home

January 12, 2020 GMT
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In this booking photo released by the Salt Lake County Sheriff's Office is Maxwell Wolcott, 28, in Salt Lake County Jail, Saturday, Jan. 11, 2020, in South Salt Lake, Utah. Wolcott was arrested on suspicion of murder and other crimes Saturday, in the death of his 74-year-grandfather, John Peel, whose body was found by firefighters after a fire at his home. (Salt Lake County Sheriff's Office via AP)
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In this booking photo released by the Salt Lake County Sheriff's Office is Maxwell Wolcott, 28, in Salt Lake County Jail, Saturday, Jan. 11, 2020, in South Salt Lake, Utah. Wolcott was arrested on suspicion of murder and other crimes Saturday, in the death of his 74-year-grandfather, John Peel, whose body was found by firefighters after a fire at his home. (Salt Lake County Sheriff's Office via AP)

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — A man was arrested on suspicion of murder and other crimes Saturday in the death of his 74-year-grandfather whose body was found by firefighters after a fire at his home.

Maxwell Wolcott, 28, was also being held on suspicion of aggravated arson, aggravated burglary, abuse of a dead human body and obstruction of justice in the death of John Peel, 74, according to jail records. It is not clear if he has an attorney.

According to an arrest document, detectives found surveillance video of Wolcott leaving the area and he later admitted to forcing his way into the house and stabbing his grandfather, KSL-TV reported. Wolcott told police he left the house and returned a short time later and doused Peel’s body in lighter fluid “with the intention of destroying evidence.”

After responding to the fire at Peel’s home on Friday morning, crews quickly extinguished the blaze burning on the front porch and inside the house. When they went in, they found Peel’s body, Division Chief Ryan Mellor of the Salt Lake City Fire Department said.

Officials initially said say they did not know whether the man died because of the fire or for another reason.

Neighbors reported the fire after hearing screaming and seeing flames.