6 Bodies Found at Burned Pennsylvania House Where 2 Officers Were Shot

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The remains of six family members have been recovered from a burned home in southeastern Pennsylvania, including those of a man who is believed to have shot two police officers on Wednesday, the authorities said on Friday.

Jack Stollsteimer, the Delaware County district attorney, said at a news conference on Friday afternoon that the recovery of the bodies was “gruesome work” that had lasted into Friday.

Mr. Stollsteimer said on Thursday that three adults and three children had been feared dead in a fiery episode that began on Wednesday afternoon when the police responded to a report that an 11-year-old girl had been shot at a home in East Lansdowne, Pa., just west of Philadelphia.

When police officers arrived at the home, they were immediately met with gunfire, and two officers were injured, according to Mr. Stollsteimer. Some time after the officers were shot, the home burst into flames, and officials had to wait overnight for the fire to subside before they could begin recovering the bodies, Mr. Stollsteimer said.

The names of the dead people were not released by officials on Friday. Mr. Stollsteimer referred to them only as the Le family. Mr. Stollsteimer said that a medical examiner would soon begin the process of positively identifying the victims.

“From seeing it firsthand, these are charred remains,” Mr. Stollsteimer said. “They are unrecognizable human beings. Not only was there an intense fire, but the building collapsed on these folks as they were in there.”

Mr. Stollsteimer said that based on information given to the authorities from grandparents in the Le family, Canh Le was suspected of shooting one of his young nieces, “which is unbelievable.”

Chin Le, the mother of Mr. Le, told WPVI on Friday that her son was the gunman. Ms. Le told the station that Mr. Le was dead and that it was believed that the others who died in the episode were her other son, Xuong Le; his wife, Britni McLaughlin-Le; and their three children, NaKayla, 13, NaTayla, 17, and Xavier, 10.

Many questions still remained on Friday, including what had prompted the episode, whether Mr. Le had also shot other members of his family and how the fire had begun.

“Our assumption is that they were shot by gunfire, and then there was a fire set,” Mr. Stollsteimer said. “But we have no idea whether or not that’s true.”

The remains of a torso were found at the home with a melted rifle, Mr. Stollsteimer said. If those remains are identified as those of Mr. Le, Mr. Stollsteimer said, the “criminal investigation will be closed.”

Detectives were struggling to determine why Mr. Le would have shot his niece, Mr. Stollsteimer said.

“He just went haywire,” he said.

One of the police officers was shot in the leg, and another was shot in the forearm, Mr. Stollsteimer said, adding that they had both sustained “serious traumatic injuries.” One officer was released from the hospital on Thursday, and the other was expected to be released on Friday.

Mayor Majovie Bland of East Lansdowne described the area as “a close-knit community” and said he had seen the children in the Le family walk to school.

“We’re in pain,” he said. “We’re hurting.”



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