Police now classify fire as arson, man's death as suicide

UPDATED FRIDAY 2 P.M. — Days after saying a Monday fire was “deliberately set”, the Greenwich Police Department now says that the fire is being investigated as an arson.

Barbara Verboven, 69, is still being treated at Bridgeport Hospital’s burn unit for injuries suffered in the fire. Police say when they responded to the scene at 46 Havemeyer Lane they found her son Dean Verboeven, 42, in her bedroom with a “grave injury” to his head. He was taken to Stamford Hospital and was pronounced dead. An autopsy performed by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner’s Office found that Mr. Verboeven had shot himself in the head and ruled his death a suicide.


The two shared the home together. Greenwich Police Department Public Information Officer Lt. Kraig Gray said that Ms. Verboven is handicapped but no other details about how the fire was set or why have been released yet. He said that she is currently being treated in Bridgeport for external burns and smoke inhalation. She is still listed in critical condition.

Lt. Gray said that a neighbor on Havemeyer Lane, which is right by the Greenwich/Stamford border noticed smoke and flames coming from the residence at approximately 7 a.m. Tuesday morning and police and fire responded to the scene. Both mother and son were removed from the scene and the fire department found Ms. Verboven in a heavily smoke filled room lying in bed under the covers. Mr. Verboven was found lying on the floor adjacent to the bed. A gun taken from the scene was found in the bedroom and it is registered to Mr. Verboven.

Lt. Gray said on Friday that the investigation into the fire, which is being handled jointly by the Greenwich police and fire departments, is ongoing. He added that no more details will be released until the investigation is complete. The fire has been determined to have been incendiary and the Fire Marshal’s office and the police are treating the investigation as an arson.

Greenwich-post.com will have more information when it is released.

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