Suspect detained in Omsk Region in connection with probe into fire killing 5 adopted children

The Omsk Region Office of the Investigative Committee continues investigation in reckless homicide under Part 3 of Article 109 and unsafe work or services causing death of two or more people under Part 3 of Article 238 of the RF Criminal Code after 5 adopted children died in a fire in a house in the settlement of Sedelnikovo, Omsk Region on 22 January 2018.

Investigators have identified and detained a suspect – a 39-year-old operator of a gas station who had filled the gas tank improperly so it had detonated in a warm room. By now, the suspect has been questioned and denies the charges, however the investigators have evidence against the suspect. They are going to ask courts to place the man in custody pending trial.

As became known earlier, about 10 AM on 22 January 2018, a 56-year-old resident of Sedelnikovo, adoptive father to 7 children, filled the 12-liter gas tank at the gas station owned by member of the Tara Municipal Council. He then put the tank in the stokehole of his two-storey house, while his 49-year-old wife and 5 of the adopted children: sisters aged 6 and 9, their 16-year-old brother and girls aged 11 and 18 were inside. About 1 PM the gas tank exploded and caused fire which killed the children on the second floor. Their adoptive mother was in the bath on the first floor. She got 3rd degree burns, but was able to get outside. She is in intensive care unit in grave condition. The father who was also on the first floor at the moment of the explosion, suffered some minor burns when he was trying to save the children, he had been thrown out of the house by a shock wave. Other adopted children: a 14-year-old boy and 17-year-old girl were not hurt because they were at school at the time. At the moment they are staying with adoptive parents’ relatives and are getting psychological aid. The adoptive family was described as a good one.

The investigators have seized from the fire scene parts of the gas tank and other physical evidence. They have ordered a fire technical and forensic medical examinations to find out what the children died of. They have also confiscated documents from guardianship authorities and the gas station. The owner and staff of the gas station have been questioned.

A number of investigative and search operations are underway to find out if there were other people involved in the crime. The inquest continues.  

23 January 2018 19:38

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