A Malabar, Florida, man is believed to have killed his wife, her sister and his 9-year-old son before setting their house on fire and committing suicide at sea, Brevard County sheriff’s deputies said.
Tony and Chrissy Hughes, 39, lived in their home at 855 Atz Road in Malabar with their son, Sebastian Meachum, 9, deputies said.
Chrissy’s sister, 39-year-old Linda Woods, was visiting the family from Arkansas.
Deputies believe Tony set the home ablaze after killing Chrissy, Linda and Sebastian, before sailing out past Sebastian Inlet and taking his own life.
The house fire started at 10:30 a.m. Sunday, deputies said.
Brevard County and Palm Bay fire rescues found an adult female inside the home Sunday, but had to leave the home because the structure was not safe, investigators said.
Once the fire was put out, crews found the remains of two women and what they believe is a child, deputies said.
Investigators believe the child to be Sebastian.
Autopsies are underway and deputies believe all three were killed before the fire was started, deputies said.
Deputies found a truck and boat trailer registered to Tony Hughes at Christenson’s Landing. The truck was still running, but the boat was missing, deputies said. The boat was later found going in circles seven miles offshore of Sebastian Inlet with no one aboard.
Deputies said they found blood evidence, and the Coast Guard is searching for Tony’s body near where the boat was found.
Witnesses told deputies there were some recent domestic violence issues between the Hugheses.
Anyone with information related to the deaths is asked to call Brevard County agent Wendy Wheeler at 321-633-8413.
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