EVANSVILLE, Ind. — The coroner has figured out how the three people were killed in an explosion in an Evansville neighborhood last week.
The coroner says Charles and Martina Hite both died of blunt force trauma to the chest, that trauma being the force from the explosion in their home. Their neighbor, Jessica Teague, died of asphyxia, no doubt from the dust and debris left behind from the blast.
Now that the coroner has released the official cause of death of the three victims, fire investigators can start their “very slow methodical process” of figuring out what it was that caused such an explosion. It leveled the Hite’s home and damaged 39 homes, leaving 11 uninhabitable.
“The Indiana State Fire Marshal’s Office is leading this investigation and the Evansville Fire Department is assisting,” EFD Division Chief Mike Larson said. “Several Insurance investigators have been in town and the Evansville Police Department is assisting with interviews as they are needed, along with site security.”
The ATF also has explosive experts on the scene to assist. Last week CenterPoint Energy ruled out any gas leaks that may have caused the explosion.
Evansville Police have released body camera footage of one of the officers responding to the blast. It took them not ten minutes to clear houses in the immediate area of the explosion and rummage through debris looking for people.
A fourth person was injured in the explosion but was taken to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries.
WATCH the body camera video: