A woman has been charged with murder and arson following a house fire in Melbourne’s south-west that left a family of three, including a newborn baby, dead.
A 46-year-old woman has been charged with murder and arson following a house fire in Melbourne's south-west that left a family of three, including a newborn baby, dead.
Abbey Forrest, 19, Inda Sohal, 28, and their three-week-old baby daughter Ivy were found dead inside their Point Cook townhouse after a ferocious fire ripped through the Totem Way property about 3.40am yesterday.
Arson and Explosive Squad detectives this afternoon charged Jenny Hayes from Airport West with three counts of murder and arson causing death.
Police believe Ms Hayes is known to either Ms Forrest or Mr Sohal.
She faced the Melbourne Magistrates' Court tonight where she did not apply for bail. She is expected back in court next March.
"Police are not looking for anyone else in relation to the matter," Victoria Police said in a statement.
Arson and Explosives Squad detectives are investigating after the double-storey home was left gutted by the blaze and two others were damaged.
Emily Forrest returned to the scene of the fatal blaze today, telling reporters her sister Abbey had only moved into the home a few weeks ago with her partner Inda, after the birth of their daughter.
"I'm just trying to be really strong, and just trying to hold it together for them," she said.
"Their daughter will be three weeks old tomorrow.
"Their lives had pretty much just started and should be like the perfect time of their life and now this awful tragedy has happened."
Gurvinder Singh, a close friend of Mr Sohal, was too overcome with grief to speak for long about the tragedy.
"I just don't have any words for… I just can't describe the sadness that I'm having now," he said.
The young family is believed to have only been living in the area a short time.
Distressed neighbours woke to the sound of their smoke alarm just before 4am to find the house next door engulfed in flames.
They used an axe in a desperate attempt to free a woman from inside the house but were unable to get to her.
"All I can hear in my head right now is them screaming for help," neighbour Jade Bartolo told 9News.
Yesterday Detective Senior Sergeant Mark Kennedy said the house fire was being treated as suspicious.
"We've confirmed tragically located the bodies of two adult deceased persons the premises upstairs," he said before the baby was found.
"It certainly is being treated as suspicious, prominently because of the intensity of the fire."
Fire Rescue Victoria in a statement said the structural integrity of the townhouse in the middle, where it is believed the fire began, was compromised.
More than 40 firefighters battled the blaze at the scene, with eight firefighting appliances, including aerial and rescue units, bringing it under control in an hour.
Source: 9News https://www.9news.com.au/national/woman-arrested-after-family-of-three-including-newborn-baby-killed-in-house-fire-melbourne/42289644-af2e-405e-9216-d1e6ab9c64bf