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Man found dead in garage of burning home after reports of shots fired

(KIRO 7)

The body of a man has been found inside the garage of a burning home in Lynnwood after deputies received reports of shots fired and a neighbor said the homeowner had texted him about suicide.

The fire at the home in the 14500 block of Madison Way was reported at about 7:30 a.m. Wednesday.

South Snohomish County Fire spokeswoman Leslie Hynes said when firefighters arrived, the home, which is in a somewhat isolated, wooded area, was fully engulfed in flames.

As crews fought the fire, deputies received reports of sounds of gunshots or fireworks coming from the home. Firefighters then backed off firefighting efforts until deputies could arrive and ensure the crews’ safety.

Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Shari Ireton said during the fire, there were reports that a neighbor was receiving text messages from the homeowner that talked about suicide, and that there might be a suicide note inside the home.

As the home burned, the sheriff’s office said that an armed “lone male occupant” was believed to be inside a vehicle in the garage.

The neighbor who said he was on the phone with the homeowner during the fire told KIRO 7 the man had locked himself inside the truck of his car, but then had second thoughts about his death and wanted help, as he was trapped.

The neighbor said he had to tell the man that firefighters were unable to approach the home because of reports of gunshots.

Once the fire was knocked down, fire crews were able to enter the garage, where the body of a man was found. His cause and manner of death will be determined by the county medical examiner.

Hynes said later Wednesday morning that the fire was still burning, but was under control.

Once the fire is fully out and the home is safe for firefighters to enter, investigators will be able to determine whether the man actually had a weapon and if shots were fired.

The home, which is partially collapsed, is a complete loss.

A death investigation will be conducted.

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