FREDERICKTOWN - A 45-year-old Fredericktown man was found dead in his burning mobile home late Friday evening. A neighbor called 9-1-1 to report smoke coming from the windows of the trailer at 42 Zent Ave. around 9:45 p.m. According to Fredericktown Fire Chief Scott Mast, the body of Richard Wolff was discovered about 4 feet inside the front door of the trailer as firefighters entered the home to put out the fire.
Knox Count Coroner's Investigator Cliff Ruggles was on the scene and began the investigation into cause and manner of death, according to Knox County Coroner Dr. Jennifer Ogle. The body was ordered transported to the Licking County Coroner's Office for an autopsy, which Ogle said would be completed later today.
A state fire marshal's investigator also was dispatched to the scene. Fredericktown Police Lt. Jay Sheffer said the death remains under investigation by the Ohio Division of State Fire Marshal, the Fredericktown Fire Department, and the Knox County Coroner's Office.
"Unless something turns up in the autopsy [indicating foul play], it remains just a fire investigation for now," Sheffer said this morning.
Ogle said early indications point to an accidental cause of Wolff's death. "There were no signs of foul play," Ogle said. "Preliminary findings suggest an accident."