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Resident charged with second degree murder after Henrico house fire that left two dead

Posted at 1:23 PM, Dec 19, 2022

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. — One of the four residents who was living inside a home on Elkridge Lane when itcaught fire last Thursday morning has been charged with second-degree murder in connection to the fire, according to investigators.

Henrico Police said 35-year-old Elton Jamal Thompson of Henrico was arrested in North Carolina for allegedly breaking and entering at a commercial business in Wilson County.

Detectives went to North Carolina to question him about the fire before charging him and second-degree murder and grand larceny of a vehicle. Thompson was originally unaccounted for at the time of the fire and later was said to be out of state.

"Just the timing of the holidays, it's a tragic time for everyone," Lt. Matthew Pecka with the Henrico County Police Department, said. "When they learned that this gentleman had ties to the Henrico area and that there was a first that occurred that morning. So that information, they contacted us to let them let us know that they had this individual in custody."

Two people living in the home died in the fire. One was pronounced dead at the scene, later identified as 61-year-old Gail Katrina Thompson, while another died after being taken to a local hospital, later identified as 89-year-old Florence Thompson.

Police confirmed that the two people who were killed were Thompson's mother and grandmother.

Their causes of death are still under investigation, police said.

A third adult, believed to be a resident, was brought to a hospital to be evaluated where it was determined that they did not sustain injuries.

The fire happened in a corner room in the back of the home and was extinguished within 15 minutes. Henrico Fire marked the incident under control at 3:18 a.m.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation but police said they are waiting on lab tests to see if more charges could be brought against Thompson.

"We don't want to rush into any investigation. There are two independent investigations going on in this matter. In the grand scheme of things, we're still very early in the investigation," Pecka said.

The Henrico County Commonwealth's Attorney said Thompson is being held without bond in North Carolina on the fugitive warrant and they have started the extradition process to bring him back to face charges.

This is a developing story, so anyone with more information can email newstips@wtvr.com to send a tip.

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