Three people are dead after a home invasion ended in a house fire south of Meridian.
One of the deceased, possibly the prowler who broke into the home. It happened Wednesday night just after 10:30 at a home near the intersection of Linder and Amity.
"I get up and I go out there and I see police cars and everything out there going on and then all of a sudden, the house goes up in flames," explained Clayton Lail a neighbor.
The Ada County Sheriff's Office says gunfire broke out between officers and an adult man with a long gun who broke into the home. A 911 call made by the homeowners alerted police. Kuna Police Officer Sage Hickam and Ada County Sheriff’s deputy Chris Matkin were not injured in the incident. Officer Hickam has been with the ACSO for ten years. Deputy Matkin has been with the agency for four years.
"Our deputies engaged the suspect when they arrived on-scene here at the location. At that time there were multiple gunshots rounds that were fired," explained Ada County Sheriff Steve Bartlett.
After the gun battle, the sheriff says the prowler retreated back into the home. Fifteen minutes later the house was on fire. Police say three people were living in the home, two people were able to escape but an elderly woman couldn't get out.
The Ada County Sheriff's Office says Meridian and Kuna Fire crews arrived shortly after the fire began but were limited in what they could do since the man with the gun was still suspected to be inside the home.
Police announcing Thursday afternoon, one of the victims who escaped died from their injuries. Police say they found a second dead body in the home, but at this time they have not been able to identify it as the prowler but say where it was found matches the location of where a gun battle took place.
"We have not been able to 100% confirm that the person or the remains that are inside the residents are that of our suspect from the shooting," said Sheriff Bartlett.
The Ada County Critical Incident Task Force lead by the Boise Police Department is handling the investigation. Police are still trying to figure out the relationship between the prowler and the victims, but don't believe they knew each other. Police say they found a large amount of gasoline on-scene, but don't know how the fire started. One neighbor says that the owners of the home were nice people and can't believe this has happened.
"You know it's sad it's sad to see it come to Idaho and as the community grows just don't know who comes in," said Lail.
At this time the identity of the prowler is unknown. Investigators would like to hear from anyone who noticed anything suspicious in the Linder Amity roads neighborhood over the last several days or has any other information about what happened.