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Man charged with first degree murder after Chatham house fire

Bayli Sellars. (Source: McKinlay Funeral Home) Bayli Sellars. (Source: McKinlay Funeral Home)
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A 48-year-old man has been charged with first degree murder in the death of a 22-year-old woman in Chatham.

On June 25, 2022, around 3:50 a.m., Chatham-Kent Emergency crews were called to attend 149 Edgar Street for a residential fire.

Police say responding emergency personnel located 22-year-old resident Bayli Sellars deceased.

An investigation commenced into the origin of the fire and to determine the cause of Sellars death. Since receiving the initial call, multiple agencies have been involved with this investigation including members from the Chatham-Kent Fire Department, Ontario Fire Marshall’s Office, Regional Coroner’s Office, Royal Canadian Mounted Police (R.C.M.P.) and members of the Chatham-Kent Police Service.

On May 7, 2024, as a result of a thorough investigation, a Canada Wide Warrant was issued for the arrest of 48-year-old David William Thomas.

On Friday May 24, 2024, investigators from the Chatham-Kent Police Service along with members of the R.C.M.P located and arrested Thomas in Fanny Bay, B.C.

The accused made an initial court appearance while in British Columbia and has since been transported to Chatham-Kent.

On Tuesday, Thomas made an appearance in Chatham Court and was remanded into custody.

Thomas has been charged with first degree murder, five counts of arson-disregard for human life, indignity to a body and arson – fraudulent purpose.

His next court date is scheduled for June 11, 2024.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Const. Brad Hyatt at 519-436-6600 Ext. 288 or bradh@chatham-kent.ca.

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