Police seek person of interest in Rye house fire that killed three

By: Staff reports
November 27, 2013 Updated: November 28, 2013 at 2:39 pm
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Pueblo County Sheriff’s Deputies have identified a person of interest in a Wednesday morning house fire in Rye where three people were found dead.

Deputies are looking for 59-year-old Harry Mapps, who they said was living in the house a week ago. Authorities said that there is no information to indicate that he’s dangerous, but stress that caution should be used if anyone comes into contact with him, because the circumstances surrounding the deaths are suspicious.

The three bodies have not been identified as of Wednesday evening. KRDO is reporting that three children who were listed as unaccounted for have been located and are safe.

Video by the Pueblo Chieftain

The Rye fire department responded to the fire in the 8200 block of Highway 165. A neighbor saw smoke coming from the inside of the home and called 911. Rye fire was called around 10 a.m.  At about 1 p.m., the house had sporadic flare ups.

West Park Fire, Beulah Fire, Pueblo West Metro and the Pueblo County Sheriff’s Office Emergency Services sent fire apparatus to the scene. Pueblo County Roads and Bridges also supplied a water truck to assist.

As of 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, detectives had not been unable to access the homes to investigate the deaths, due to extensive fire and water damage, said Lisa Shorter, a Pueblo County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman. According to Shorter, Sheriff Kirk M. Taylor said the loss of life is tragic and once investigators are able to safely investigate the incident they will work hard to uncover the cause.

Authorities said Mapps is known to reside in Dimmit, Texas and may be living in his last known vehicle, a 2004 Chrysler Blue, Town and Country Van with Texas license plate 7 FSNK.

Anyone with more information is asked to call Communications Pueblo Sheriff’s Office (719) 583-6250.

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