1. ITV Report

Body found in "dense rubble" after house fire in Sunderland

A body has been discovered in Credit: PA

A murder investigation has been launched after a body was discovered in Sunderland.

On Tuesday 18 February, officers were alerted by the fire brigade to a blaze at an address on Tunstall Village Green. Emergency services attended and extinguished the fire, which had started inside a garage at a property and caused "significant damage".

But officers have now discovered human remains under "substantial and dense" rubble.

Police are currently treating the death as suspicious. The family of the suspected victim have been informed.

A 38-year-old man was arrested on Sunday in connection with the investigation and has since been released under investigation. Enquiries are continuing at the scene, as officers map out the events that immediately preceded the blaze.

  • Detective Inspector Graeme Dodds, of Northumbria Police said:

This was clearly a very serious incident that has resulted in a tragic death. Significant work is ongoing at the scene which may take some time to complete.

At present, we are treating the person’s death as suspicious but this investigation remains at a very early stage and we are remaining open-minded as to the circumstances behind the incident.

The blaze caused a huge amount of damage inside the garage, and we are now determined to map out a chronology of events and find out the circumstances that led to this fire.

While a formal identification process has yet to be concluded, we have notified the family of the suspected victim and are offering them support.

We are currently interviewing one man in connection with the incident and he continues to assist officers with their enquiries.

A visible policing presence will be seen in the area as officers continue to carry out enquiries and offer any reassurance to residents.

I would now ask anybody who has any information and who has yet to come forward to come forward and contact police. Your information could prove crucial as we look to find out how this tragic incident came about.

– Northumbria Police