Behind the crime scene tape, boxes and burnt timbers remain at 331 Old Tory Trail; those things and a lot of questions. The Montmorenci community is struggling to make sense of an arson that killed a two year old girl and her 28 year old father, Duncan Baker.
"Any type of arson seems kind of crazy, but with people in a structure, it just makes it heinous," says coroner Tim Carlton.
Aiken County investigators know this was in fact an arson, not an accidental fire because the fire ignited from multiple places in the home.
"It's an indicator that there were no accidental ignitions," says Captain Eric Abdullah of the Aiken County Sheriff's Office.
The families involved are not yet speaking out.
"The family is going through a lot of trauma right now as it is, the dad's family and the baby's family," Carlton says.
But we uncovered court documents that may shed light on the context leading up to this horrific event. The child's mother filed for divorce from Baker in January on grounds of physical cruelty. A judge's orders mandate that the little girl's visits with her father be supervised by her paternal grandfather. Although it is not known where he was when the fire started.
Investigators say they don't know who set this fire yet, and it would be irresponsible to jump to any conclusions. What they do know is that a father and his child are dead.
"The death of a child is always traumatic, as parents we don't' have the expectation that we'll ever have to deal with that situation."
And dealing with their grief is giving investigators an increased incentive to solve this case.
"As a dad it's really hard to wrap your arms around, and it causes some anger," Carlton says.
We discovered in the court's parenting plan that the little girl was scheduled to be returned to her mother by 6 o'clock PM to celebrate Mother's Day.
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