Police investigate 3 deaths in fire as homicide
Mar 17,2009 00:00 by Bend_Weekly_News_Sources

SALEM, Ore. – In a brief news release, Salem Police announced they now consider the investigation into the deaths of three persons found dead in a burning general contractor’s office Sunday evening to be a homicide investigation.

Police have declined to identify the victims or their cause of death until autopsies are completed.

Salem Firefighters responded to a fire alarm at ML Holmes General Contractor in an industrial building at 1375 Cross St. SE about 6:45 p.m., March 15. Arriving personnel found the business on fire and sent out a second alarm at about 7 p.m., then a third about ten minutes later.

At 7:08 p.m., firefighters found two deceased persons and called in the police. Once police investigators were able to gain access to the crime scene, which had been delayed because of the fire, they found a third victim. The scene was secured pending further investigation, the news release stated.

The Statesman Journal reported neighbors and other business owners worry that the victims are Myke and Kay Holmes and the company's business manager, Mike Nelson. Neither the couple nor Nelson could be reached Monday, the paper said.

Salem Police and Fire Department investigators executed a search warrant at the location on Monday morning. Based on what they found, the case is now being considered a homicide investigation.