Poconos Coal

Suspect in Luzerne fire charged with criminal homicide, arson

LAFLIN, Pa. - Preston Daquen Bonnett, 26, of Wilkes Barre was charged Monday with criminal homicide and arson in connection with the deadly Luzerne fire that killed three boys.

Police say Bonnett was already in custody on an existing arrest warrant when the charges were filed.

Bonnett is due back in court Nov. 8.

Firefighters were dispatched to a home on Oakwood Drive in Laflin around 7:15 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 25. Fire was found at the rear of the home. 

Firefighters said they found one resident within three minutes of their arrival and that the two other residents were later found on the second floor.

The Luzerne County Coroner's Office pronounced 16-year-old Erik Dupree and 12-year-old Devon Major dead at the scene. The coroner has ruled the cause of death carbon monoxide poisoning due to smoke inhalation. The manner of death is pending.

Paramedics revived an eight-year-old boy who was rescued from the home. He was taken to Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center for treatment before being flown to a burn center. The eight-year-old, Ezekiel Major, has now passed away, according to a report from Pennsylvania State Police. The coroner's office says his cause of death was due to combined effects of smoke inhalation and burns. His manner of death was ruled a homicide. 

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