4 dead after explosions in small Nebraska town ‘considered foul play’

Four people have been confirmed dead after explosions and fires at two homes in Laurel, Nebraska were “considered foul play,” police said Thursday.

Colonel John Bolduc of the Nebraska State Patrol said officers responded to a 911 call about an explosion just after 3 a.m. where they discovered a dead man.

While responding to that scene, officers noticed a second fire in a residence “some distance away”. According to the police, three people died on the second spot.

All the victims were traced inside the residences and have not been officially identified.

Police said one suspect has not been arrested and that he may have been injured, believing both accelerators were used to start the fire.

Police also described a “silver sedan” that was seen leaving the community that allegedly picked up a passenger and sought the public’s assistance in developing the lead.

Lori Hansen, a clerical assistant at Laurel City Hall, said most businesses, a seniors centre and schools voluntarily closed on the recommendation of police.

Officers in hazmat suits could be seen heading toward the scene early on Thursday morning.

Laurel is home to less than 1,000 people and is located about 100 miles northwest of Omaha.

Officials are requesting that anyone who has any information, including possible surveillance video, contact the Nebraska State Patrol. Asked to contact NPS by phone at 402-479-4921.

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