$5 Million Bail In Mobile Home Fire That Left Four Dead

Port Angeles police officer T.J. Mueller looks over the scene of a fire that left four dead and destroyed two mobile homes early Saturday at the Welcome Inn RV Park in Port Angeles. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Emergency crews were called to the Welcome Inn Trailer Park in Port Angeles, Washington at 2:30 am.  Upon arrival, they found a trailer fully engulfed in flames.  Before they were able to get the fire completely under control and extinguished, the fire spread to a neighboring trailer from which the resident was able to escape through a window, and a vehicle.

 

Just before the fire erupted, a man was seen running from the scene who was later identified as Matthew Timothy Wetherington, 34.  While initially listed as a person of interest, he was later located at a wooded campsite and arrested.  According to NBC King5, that campsite is being treated as a separate crime scene.

 

Inside the trailer, the remains of four people were located.  A fire investigator from the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Tanna Langue, stated she smelled what she recognized as gasoline in the bedroom area where the bodies were found in an affidavit filed with the court.

 

While the bodies have been removed and sent for autopsy to determine exact cause of death, they are expected to be identified as Valerie Kambeitz, 34, for whom a marriage license was issued on May 1, as well as her three children Lilly Kambeitz, 9, Emma Kambeitz, 6, and Jayden Kambeitz, 5.

 

Police wrote in the affidavit for probable cause that Wetherington told Port Angeles Police Detective David Arand that he loved his wife and kids and didn't understand how he could do something like this.  "I deserve to be locked up. That's all I've got to say," Wetherington told police, according to the affidavit.

 

Wetherington has been charged  First Degree Arson and four counts of First Degree Murder.  He has a previous record including charges of first degree child molestation and unlawful imprisonment with a sexual motivation.

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