SIOUX FALLS, SD (KELO) — A Sioux Falls family is hoping the community can help investigators figure out who broke into their house and started it on fire. The call came in early Monday morning near the corner of Sertoma and West 57th Street, on the southwest side of Sioux Falls.
“At this point in time, we believe there are some suspicious circumstances surrounding that. Fire investigator and our detectives are still investigating that portion but everything seems to be pointing toward it’s suspicious,” said Sam Clemens, public information officer, Sioux Falls Police Department.
John Bucknell and his family came home early Tuesday morning from Ohio. They were out of state for a wedding, when he got the call his house was on fire.
“You just can’t believe it over the phone and you got to see it all and it really hurts,” said John Bucknell, homeowner.
Police initially didn’t think the fire was suspicious. But when the Bucknells looked around they discovered three cars and a motorcycle were missing.
“I’ve had that motorcycle for 43 years, I still ride it to this day every Wednesday,” said Bucknell.
The family vehicles weren’t the only things that were gone.
“To go through your house and search your house for everything is just killing us,” said Bucknell.
The family is thankful some photos were saved, however, they’re having a difficult time because of all of the memories they made in this home.
“It’s going to put a damper on our lives,” said Bucknell.
Bucknell and his wife lived in the house for 35 years.
“It’s just killing me and my wife. We just retired this year and a new grandbaby,” said Bucknell.
Police believe the thefts and the fire are likely linked.
And with four missing vehicles, Bucknell thinks more than one person was involved.
“Hopefully this message will get out and we’ll be able to find out who these thugs were and catch them and put them where they belong,” said Bucknell.
Police and fire officials are working together on the investigation.