WRIGHT TOWNSHIP, Mich. -- Four people who were found dead inside a burning home are victims of a homicide, according to police.
The fire took place Monday morning in Ottawa County's Wright Township. After the flames were extinguished, the bodies of Sharmaine Zimmer, 53, her two sons - Jeremy, 20 and Tyler, 17 - and Jeremy's girlfriend -- 18-year-old Katherine Brown -- were found.
Investigators said Monday afternoon that the fire appears to be accidental.
On Tuesday, autopsies revealed the victims died as a result of homicide.
Friends of the victims are trying to make sense of this latest development.
"Nobody knows what to think about it right now," said Jax Kester, Sharmaine's best friend. "We don't know anything. Sharmaine didn't have an enemy in the world and Jeremy and Tyler were good boys. And Katherine, she was a student at MSU and she had a future."
Heather Trout made the initial 911 call and tried to yell to her neighbors inside the burning home.
"In the back of my mind I had suspected something was wrong," she said. "Nobody responded. I figured it was either smoke inhalation or somebody had killed them."
Trout said there were a lot of parties and fights at the house, but she never expected a homicide investigation next door.
Republished with permission of WOOD-TV.