UPDATED: One dead in Cleon Township fire

MANISTEE COUNTY — The Cleon Township Fire Department responded to a residential fire on Tuesday, where they say a victim was found dead in the Cleon Township home.

At this time, the identity of the victim has not been confirmed.

Detective Sgt. Scott Soper, with the Manistee County Sheriff’s Office, is heading the investigation. He said an autopsy will be performed around 9 a.m. on Wednesday.

“We will know more tomorrow,” said Soper. “We will make a positive identification then.”

According to a press release from the Manistee County Sheriff’s Office, Manistee Central Dispatch received a call about an active fire alarm at 17611 Wells Road around 1:50 a.m. on Tuesday.

Upon arrival, Cleon Township Fire Department officials found the residence fully engulfed in flames. Manistee County Sheriff’s Office deputies arrived at the scene to further investigate.

The owner of the residence was contacted; she was not at the residence.

After the fire was extinguished, officials searched the residence, finding a victim located in a bathroom who appeared to have perished in the fire.

Soper said he arrived at the scene around 5:30 a.m., and the house was still burning. He said the fire took several hours to extinguish.

The house was deemed a total loss.

“They were still fighting it when I got there,” said Soper. “Most of the fire was out, but some parts of it kept starting back up.”

Currently, the cause of the fire is unknown and under further investigation. The Michigan State Police fire marshal and Manistee County medical examiner are investigating the incident.

“The fire marshal will give us a report on the exact cause, if he can pin-point that,” said sheriff John O’Hagan. “At this time we have no comment on it. It could take a few days for a cause; we will give updates when we know.”

The Cleon Township Fire Department was assisted by the Maple Grove Township Fire Department, Munson Healthcare Manistee Hospital and Benzie County EMS.

No further details are available at this time.

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