North Carolina

Fire killed boy, woman in Alexander County. Mom’s boyfriend in custody, police say

An 11-year-old died in a house fire in Alexander County, N.C., that investigators say was purposely set, WBTV reports.

A woman also was killed in the Saturday night fire, WBTV reports. The victims were not identified Sunday afternoon.

Officials were searching for a man suspected of setting the fire. Authorities say he was the woman’s boyfriend, according to WBTV.

Police apprehended Areli Aguirre Avilez at 1:20 p.m. Sunday, according to a statement from the Alexander County Sheriff’s Office. He was found while walking along Macdeonia Church Road.

As of Sunday afternoon, Avilez has not been charged but is in custody, WBTV reports.

Alexander County Sheriff Chris Bowman said the couple has had trouble in the past and a Domestic Violence Order was issued by the court, according to WBTV.

At 11:30 p.m. Saturday, emergency responders went to a house fire on Pine Meadows Lane in Taylorsville, N.C., that was on fire, according to the county sheriff’s office. Two bodies were found inside the home.

Police believe the fire is the result of arson and are investigating, according to the sheriff’s office.

Officials say Avilez is believed to be in the country illegally, WBTV reports.

A 13-year-old is missing and was thought to be with Avilez, reports WBTV. Information on the teenager’s location was not provided Sunday afternoon.

Check back for updates.

Amanda Harris covers issues related to children and families in York, Chester and Lancaster County for The Herald. Amanda works with local schools, parents and community members to address important topics such as school security, mental health and the opioid epidemic. She graduated from Winthrop University.
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