Federal ATF agents have joined Smithfield Police and the Johnston County Fire Marshal’s Office in the investigation of a fatal weekend house fire.
Around 5:00 am Saturday, flames destroyed a home on South Fifth Street next to the Smithfield Police Department. Eight people were inside the home. Seven made it out alive. One person died in the fire.
While law enforcement and fire officials have not released the name of the victim, family members have identified the victim as 43 year-old Michael Carol Davis. Davis was deaf.
Interim Smithfield Fire Chief John Blanton said firefighters made an effort to rescue the victim but were forced back because of the intense smoke and flames. After the blaze was extinguished, Davis’ body was located. The Red Cross is assisting the surviving family members with a place to stay.
Foul play is not suspected. Photos by John Payne