Arrest made after 4 people found dead in 2 burning homes in Nebraska

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The state patrol announced Thursday that they had discovered one body after an explosion was reported at a home on Elm Street at about 3 a.m. on Thursday.

Authorities in a small Nebraska town said a resident was arrested on Friday “in connection with four homicides” discovered at two nearby homes that may have been deliberately set on fire.

A Nebraska State Patrol SWAT team arrested 42 year old Jason Jones, at his home in Laurel, Nebraska, on “probable cause that this suspect committed these crimes,” Nebraska State Patrol Col. John Bolduc announced at a news conference on Friday.

Bolduc identified three of the victims as Gene Twiford, 86, Janet Twiford, 85, and Dana Twiford, 55. Officials said they lived at a home on the 500 block of Elm Street. They each had suspected gunshot wounds, according to a statement from the state patrol.

The fourth victim was identified as 53 year old Michele Ebeling, who lived on the 200 block of Elm Street, the same block where Jones lived, and only blocks away from where the other three victims were discovered, officials said.

Ebeling also had suspected gunshot wounds, officials said.

The state patrol announced on Thursday that they had discovered one body after an explosion was reported at a home on Elm Street at about 3 a.m. on Thursday. While at the home, a second house fire was reported about three blocks away. Three others were found dead there.

Officials on Thursday said investigators believed accelerants were used in both fires and that a suspect may have been injured.

Bolduc on Friday praised firefighters’ “heroic efforts.”

“We asked them to put out these fires while preserving the evidence of these crimes. They had to adjust their tactics in order to do that,” he said. “Their efforts preserved the evidence that led us directly to the suspect.”

Bolduc did not rule out additional arrests, but said the community is safe.