The town of Percy, Illinois said a final farewell to the four children killed in last Friday's house fire.
12-year-old Ethan, 9-year-old Kailey, and 5-year-old twins Brandon and Landon Owen died in the fire. Their parents and a cousin escaped the burning home. Derrick Twardoski faces four murder charges in connection to the fire.
Prosecutors say they believe they know why he set the fire, but are not releasing the motive ahead of the trial.
The man accused of setting the Randolph County house fire that killed four children has pleaded not guilty.
33-year-old Derrick Twardoski is facing murder charges after allegedly setting the fire that killed 12-year-old Ethan Owen, 9-year-old Kailey Owen, and five-year-old twins Brandon and Landon Owen in Percy, a village 60 miles southeast of St. Louis. A judge ordered him jailed without bond and assigned him to be represented by a public defender. State's Attorney Jeremy Walker says he doesn't consider the fire random, though he's declined to detail what led investigators to Twardoski or any relationship he may have had with the victims.
Randolph County Coroner Randy Dudenbostel has confirmed that all four died of smoke inhalation.
Funeral services for the children will be Tuesday at St. Mark's Lutheran Church in Steelville, Illinois.
Donation are being accepted at the church to help the family with their expenses.
The funeral service for the Owen children has been planned. It will be held Tuesday, May 14, at 2:00pm at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in Steeleville, IL, with visitation Monday evening from 4:00pm until 8:00pm and again Tuesday from 7:30am until 1:45pm also at the church.
A man now faces four murder charges in connection to the fire in southern Illinois that left four children dead.
Police say 33-year-old Derrick Twardoski is responsible for the fatal blaze. The fire broke out just before 2 this morning in Percy.
The victims were identified as 12-year-old Ethan Owen, and his siblings 9-year-old Kailey, and 5-year-old twins Brandon and Landon. Their parents and cousin survived.
Percy is a village in a rural area with a popaulation of about 1,000 people. It is about 60 miles southeast of St. Louis.