Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Two Arrest Warrants Issued In Connection With Southside Blast

UPDATED: Indianapolis investigators confirm to various local news sources that two arrest warrants have been issued this afternoon in connection with last week's southside home explosion in the Richmond Hill subdivision that killed two and caused millions of dollars in damages to homes throughout the subdivision. News reports indicate that two males have been taken into police custody for questioning, neither of whom have been formally charged with a crime. WTHR has identified one of the men taken into custody as Bob Leonard. He is the brother of Mark Leonard, the boyfriend of Monserrate Shirley, owner of the home that exploded. Investigators earlier confirmed a white van owned by Mark Leonard had been impounded. Investigators yesterday asked the public for any information they had concerning the identity of persons seen inside the van within the subdivision only hours before the explosion took place. A $10,000 award has been offered for information leading to an arrest and conviction.

According to the Indianapolis Star, Leonard has a lengthy rap sheet. Leonard and Shirley told investigators they were out-of-town at the Hollywood riverboat casino in Lawrenceburg when they learned the home had exploded violently. Before leaving town, Shirley left her daughter at a friend's home and boarded the family's cat. Investigators believe a gas leak was intentionally introduced into the home prior to the explosion and an electrical device of some sort, perhaps remotely controlled, was used to trigger the explosion after a sufficient amount of gas had leaked into the home. Investigators are looking at the home's gas meter to determine if there was a spike in the amount of gas being consumed before the blast occurred. Shirley had attempted to sell the home earlier this year through a short sale but failed to complete the deal when she was unable to come up with the a payment required by the agreement. Shirley and Leonard insist they are innocent and had nothing to do with the blast.

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