Man arrested for allegedly starting house fire that killed his parents and sister

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – A man whose parents and sister lost their lives last weekend to a fire that gutted the family’s Logan Heights home was arrested Friday for allegedly setting the deadly blaze.

Wilber Romero, 26, was booked into county jail Friday afternoon on suspicion of arson, three counts of murder and two counts of attempted murder in connection with the three fire deaths and the serious injuries suffered by two members of the household who survived the blaze, according to San Diego police.

The deadly fire in the 3100 block of Clay Avenue erupted shortly before 4:30 a.m. Sunday.

“Neighbors told 911 dispatchers a family lived in the home and (that) they could hear screaming inside,” Lt. Martha Sainz said.

Arriving firefighters found the home fully enveloped in flames.

“Due to the intense fire conditions, it took a little while for us to get it knocked down and get in there and get those victims out,” San Diego Fire-Rescue Department Battalion Chief Steve Salaz told reporters.

One member of the family, 44-year-old Jose Antonio Romero, died in the charred residence. His wife, Nicalasa “Nico” Maya-Romero, 46, and 21-year- old daughter, Iris Romero, died in a hospital over the next several days.

The couple’s other two children, a 23-year-old daughter and 16-year- old son, remain hospitalized.

Wilber Romero escaped the fire unharmed, Sainz said.

Authorities did not immediately disclose a suspected motive for the alleged act of homicidal arson.

The suspect was being held in San Diego Central Jail without bail pending arraignment, scheduled for Tuesday afternoon.

Categories: Local San Diego News