SHANNON COUNTY, Mo.– Two suspects are in custody after a suspicious residential fire in Birch Tree left one dead.
On April 2, after extinguishing the fire, authorities found the body of Barbara Lynn, 77. A joint investigation by the Shannon County Sheriff and a coroner, deemed the case to be suspicious.
During the investigation, a possible link was found between this residential fire and other recent fires and activity in the same vicinity. The investigation led authorities to arrest, Stanley Kenaga, 30. He is charged with second-degree murder and first-degree burglary.
The sheriff’s office asked for help in finding the second suspect, Joseph Proffer, 23. Proffer was located and arrested the night of April 16. He faces identical charges as Kenaga.
Both suspects are being held on a no-bond warrant.
According to a probable cause statement, during the investigation they found Barbara Lynn deceased in the hallway. An autopsy was conducted and results showed that Lynn was beaten and strangled to death.
Missouri State Highway Patrol conducted an interview with Kenaga who said he had information that Lynn had been killed and the residence was set on fire.
In a second interview, Kenaga admitted he and Proffer had information that Lynn had withdrawn $20,00 from her account and she was keeping it in the residence.
Kenaga said he and Proffer were planning on breaking into the home to look for the money and split it. He said they had walked and driven by several times and believed the house to be unoccupied the night they planned on breaking in.
Kenaga said they forced there was in through the back door and soon realized there was someone home. He said Lynn confronted Proffer and Proffer proceeded to body slam, strangle, and kill Lynn.
Kenaga told police that Proffer then set fire to the residence.