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Officials identify 5 dead in suspected carbon minoxide poisoning

Tuesday - 4/24/2012, 6:58pm  ET

Loved ones and investigators gather outside the Oxon Hill home where five people were found dead from suspected carbon monoxide poisoning. (WTOP/Nathan Hager)

OXON HILL, Md. - Five people are dead in Prince George's County of suspected carbon monoxide poisoning.

County fire spokesman Mark Brady says the three men and two women were found Tuesday inside a home in the 700 block of Shelby Drive in Oxon Hill, in a neighborhood across from Oxon Hill High School.

Officials say all five were from El Salvador and all members of the Tabernacle of the Restoration in Oxon Hill.

Two of the men were in their 30s, one in his mid-40s, and the women were in their 60s.

Members of the church were at the scene Tuesday afternoon, as officials investigated. They say the church's pastor broke the news.

Public records indicated that Sonia M. Chavez and Oscar A. Chavez lived in the home, which was purchased by the woman in 2010.

Police have identified those who died:

  • Oscar Chavez, Shelby Drive, Oxon Hill
  • Sonia Maribel Leiva, Oxon Hill
  • Nora N. Leiva, Chicago
  • Gomez Segovia, Francisco Javier, Fairfax
  • Nelson Enrique Landaverde Alas, Oxon Hill

Ramon Nunoz, who lives across the street, said the married couple was originally from El Salvador and the man worked in construction.

"They were good people. I'm very sad that this happened," Nunoz said.

Nunoz said he didn't know who else might have been staying with the couple.

The one-story brick home was built in 1955 and has an assessed value of $207,000, records show.

Two of the people were found by a family member who showed up at the house to check on the occupants' welfare. Firefighters responded and found three additional bodies.

Prince George's County police sent homicide detectives to the scene, but there was no indication of any foul play, said Cpl. Mike Rodriguez, a police spokesman.

Brady says firefighters detected extraordinarily high levels of carbon monoxide in the home. He says a normal carbon monoxide reading is 0 to 5 parts per million; the reading taken at the one-story Oxon Hill home was 550 parts per million.

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