By JO ANN BOBBY-GILBERT
EAST LIVERPOOL - A fire that killed four people early Saturday morning has been ruled arson by the state fire marshal.
In a press release Monday morning, public information officer Shane Cartmill said the fire that killed Ulrick Estimot, 37 and his sons, Trey, 11, Terrell, 7, and Trenton, 5, is now being investigated as a crime by the city police department, supported by the state fire marshal's office.
Also involved in the investigation is the city fire department and county coroner's office.
Details of how and when the fire was started were not released by the state fire marshal, due to the on-going investigation. Additional information is being awaited from the coroner's office, but in an interview over the weekend, Coroner Dr. William Graham had said none of the victims had suffered blunt force trauma.
Each had elevated levels of carbon monoxide in their systems, Graham said in that interview, with the two older boys having very high levels. They were found on the upper floor of the Vine Street residence, while their father and 5-year-old brother were found on the first floor.
All four also suffered burns of varying degrees, Graham has reported. Autopsies are being conducted to determine the exact cause of death.
Police Chief John Lane had confirmed Sunday that the fire was not accidental but was waiting to speak with detectives before releasing additional information.