Ashley Turton, former chief of staff to Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), and wife of White House liaison to the House of Representatives Dan Turton, was found dead in a burning car early this morning.
A joint investigation by the fire and police departments is ongoing, and the car was located in a garage behind the Turton's home. The couple has three small children. One adult and two children were evacuated from the Turton's home, located eight blocks from the US Capitol. Turton was discovered in the driver's seat of the vehicle, an SUV, and the "leading theory" is reportedly that the incident stemmed from a car crash "in or around the garage."
Bill Johnson, president and CEO of Duke Energy, where Turton was employed, released a statement regarding her death:
"Ashley was a valued employee whose insight and hard work had been critical on so many of our legislative and regulatory issues. She was also a dear friend to many of us and this news is very hard to take. I know we all will keep her husband, children and parents in our thoughts and prayers. Today is an eventful day for us as employees of Progress Energy. Ashley’s tragic death reminds us all to keep perspective in all things.”The incident has also been described as possibly a "freak accident."