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February 26, 2007
Update: Probe into fire, missing woman continues
SOUTH KINGSTOWN -- The police today are continuing to investigate last week's suspicious fire at the home of a University of Rhode Island professor and the subsequent disappearance of his wife.
South Kingtown police collected evidence over the weekend, which is being examined today at the Rhode Island State Crime Laboratory on the URI campus, according to South Kingstown police Capt. Jeffrey Allen.
The evidence was gathered from in and around Joseph and Adrianne Lynn Matoney's 19 French Road home that was destroyed by fire late last week, as well as other evidence taken from "elswhere in the community," Allen said, declining to be more specific.
The state Fire Marshal's Office is also continuing to investigate the cause of the fire, according to Chief Deputy State Fire Marshal Michael DiMascolo. He said he doesn't expect a definitive answer today on whether it was set intentionally. The crime lab is testing materials taken from the fire scene for evidence of accelerants.
Adrianne Lynn Matoney, 58, hasn't been seen since the fire. Her car was later found on the Sakonnet River Bridge connecting Tiverton and Portsmouth in eastern Rhode Island. While she is officially listed as missing, authorities continue to search the area for signs of a body.
-- projo.com staff writer Steve Peoples with reports from Journal staff writer Paul Davis
Crews searched through the weekend. This morning, they had not yet decided whether to go back out on the Sakonnet River, Portsmouth Police Lt. Jeffrey Furtado said.
No signs of Matoney have been found in the area where her green Toyota Camry was found, Furtado said.
Yesterday, Portsmouth police and fire departments, Newport police, the Rhode Island State Police K-9 unit and the state fire marshal helped search the area, Furtado said.
The Portsmouth Fire Department sent two boats, and the Newport Police also sent a vessel, he said. On Saturday, the state Department of Environmental Management sent a boat, following an extensive search Friday that included a Coast Guard boat and helicopter.
-- projo.com staff writer Kate Bramson
CORRECTION: An earlier item incorrectly identified Furtado
Posted by Kate Bramson at 12:56 PM | Permalink
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