Grand Junction Arson Victim Identified
An elderly woman has just been identified as the victim of an arson that took place in Grand Junction this past Wednesday, September 22nd.
The victim has been identified by authorities as 80-year-old Mary Cruthers. Cruthers lived on 29 1/2 Road and Prospect in Grand Junction and was unfortunately killed in a fire at her residence this past Wednesday.
The fire was ruled an arson by authorities and the man who is believed to have started the fire that resulted in the unfortunate fatality of the woman has been identified as 33-year-old Kellan Hoyt.
However, according to reports by the Mesa County Coroner's Office, Cruthers was not in fact killed by the fire or smoke inhalation related to the arson on her home, but rather by a wound to the neck, which is believed to have been caused by Hoyt.
No motive behind the attack and murder is known at this time, but Hoyt has been charged with murder in the first degree, first-degree arson, tampering with a deceased human body, tampering with physical evidence and second-degree assault with intent to cause bodily injury by strangulation.
This unfortunate incident was first addressed by the Grand Junction Fire Department on Wednesday afternoon at around 4:15 p.m. but it would seem that the murder had already been committed by the time the fire department arrived on the scene.
Police were able to take Hoyt into custody following the attack and arson after discovering him around 10 minutes after arriving on the scene at a residence in the 3100 block of Covey Avenue.
The investigation regarding this case is ongoing at this time.
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