Carbon monoxide poisoning has killed four people in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, and authorities are working to determine whether the deaths are accidental or intentional.
The carbon monoxide incident occurred in Milford Township Monday night, and police say the dead are 59-year-old Gary Reitnauer, 58-year-old Michele Reitnauer, 16-year-old Kimberly Reitnauer (identified by some sources as Yun Jiao Cao), and 10-year-old Jamie Reitnauer.
In a news release about the four dead found in the Pennsylvania home, Lt. Vincent D’Angelo of the Pennsylvania State Police confirms that officers responded to the residence at around 11:20 PM Monday to discover a running vehicle in the dwelling and all four of the people inside not responsive. None were revived after police responded.
“When troopers arrived at the residence, they found the house was clearly filled with high levels of carbon monoxide from a running vehicle in a garage below [inside] the residence.”
While the incident has not been confirmed to have been intentional, a nephew of the couple identified as Rob Zern commented on the carbon monoxide poisoning deaths, saying:
“Good man … The family was trying to save each other and it didn’t work out … don’t know what all went wrong, but it’s a tragedy all around.”
Aislinn Strohecker was a classmate and close friend of Kimberly Reitnauer, and says that the teen and her family were well-liked in the neighborhood:
“Everyone here loved her. She always had a smile on her face. Her whole family did. They were just the happiest people, and they made everyone else feel the same way.”
Maggie Chambers, Strohecker’s mom, says the four were “just the sweetest family.” Chambers expressed skepticism that the carbon monoxide deaths were intentional, and told reporters:
“It’s not that kind of family. For me to even think for a minute that this was a deliberate thing, it’s just not them … It’s not.”
The deaths believed to be due to carbon monoxide poisoning occurred just weeks after the similar deaths of Buckwild star Shain Gandee, his uncle David, and a friend after their car’s tailpipe became obstructed and filled the vehicle with the deadly fumes.