Prosecutor's office protecting evidence in blast investigation
Homes once filled with cherished memories are now piles of crumbled twisted debris.
Ten wrecking permits have been approved for the Richmond Hill subdivision, and three more are pending to demolish what's left of the houses damaged in the deadly south side explosion, which investigators say was no accident.
One by one, the unlivable homes are coming down. Away from the scene, piece by piece, forensic investigators are trying to determine what caused the blast.
Eyewitness News sat down with the man overseeing it all Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry.
"Certain items that have been gathered from the scene have been submitted either to our Marion County crime lab, or the Federal Alcohol Tobacco labs either for further testing or examination or both," Curry said.
The science, Curry says, will be left to the experts while his investigators are on the human trail.
So far, more than 15 search warrants have been served, the results sealed under court order to protect the integrity of the case.
"The investigation is not complete and I think it's fair to say that we are making progress," he revealed.
The prosecutor balks at outside experts who wonder aloud about the difficult odds of solving arson cases.
"I guess I don't necessarily agree. Any given case, whether it's an arson case or robbery case or any case we prosecute, sometimes they can be difficult," he said, noting that arson cases are tried all across the nation.
But Curry does admit it's not an open and shut case, at least not now. He wants more information about that white van seen in the Richmond Hill neighborhood the night of the explosion.
"We will reach a conclusion one way or another when we're comfortable we've exhausted all avenues of the investigation," Curry said.
When asked if there is the possibility that at the end of the investigation no charges could be filed, the Prosecutor responded, "Oh it's certainly possible. Obviously, we have not reached that conclusion at all."
Curry says he knows the public wants more information, but says he has to protect the evidence collected to ensure possible witnesses are not simply repeating something they have heard.
Crime Stoppers is offering a $1,000 reward and ATF up to $10,000 for information leading to an arrest and prosecution in the case.