Man charged with arson, murder in fatal Denison fire

By: Jennifer Sanders Email
By: Jennifer Sanders Email

DENISON, TX - A woman is dead after a fire early this morning in Denison, and authorities have arrested a man related to the woman in the case and charged him with arson and murder.

Authorities tell us a trailer home caught fire in Denison around 1 a.m. When firefighters arrived at the home on Loy Lake Road, it was already fully engulfed in flames.

John Derek Saxon, 29, is the man investigators say set the massive fire early Friday morning. Inside the home, police found a body so badly burned it can only be identified by dental records.

Thomas Walker is the man credited for calling 911 shortly after the fire started. He was headed back from Oklahoma when he saw the blaze sweeping through the trailer. It's an image he says he'll never forget. He said in the seconds it took him to get to the home, it was fully engulfed.

"The front door fell down as soon as we pulled up, and the whole side of the house was gone," said Walker.

In a matter of minutes Denison firefighters were at the scene trying to put the fire out. After it was contained, they found a woman's body inside.

"We believe we know who the victim is, but we're going to have to wait on dental records to confirm. We do believe it's a 47-year-old female that lived in the residence," said Sgt. Rickey Wheeler of the Grayson County Sheriff's Office.

After authorities received a tip about the fire, they made contact with Saxon and, after interviewing him, they gathered enough information to make an arrest. Investigators don't know a motive yet, but Saxon is behind bars being held on nearly a million dollars bond for murder and arson. Investigators say Saxon is a relative of the woman that died in the fire.

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