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Boone County prosecutors have charged 31-year-old Steven Martin Strumpf with first degree murder for January's deadly blaze on Columbia's Deerfoot Way (January 21, 2024 mug shot courtesy of the Boone County Sheriff Department's website)

UPDATE: Boone County prosecutors file murder charges after deadly blaze in south Columbia

Columbia Police are seeking first degree murder charges against 31-year-old Steven Martin Strumpf for Friday morning’s deadly blaze on Columbia’s Deerfoot Way (January 21, 2024 mug shot courtesy of the Boone County Sheriff Department’s website)

Boone County prosecutors have charged a Columbia man with first degree murder and arson for Friday’s early-morning deadly house fire in the 3900 block of Deerfoot Way in south Columbia.

31-year-old Steven Martin Strumpf has been charged with first degree murder, second degree arson, armed criminal action and a misdemeanor charge of fraudulent use of a credit device. The Columbia Police Department’s heavily-redacted three-page probable cause statement says Strumpf allegedly admits stabbing the victim several times in the neck, before pouring gas on the body and setting it on fire in the garage.

Columbia Police have not released the victim’s name, but court documents suggest it’s someone whose initials are DS. CPD officials say the Columbia Fire Department’s investigation, assisted by their arson dog, revealed the presence of accelerants near the victim’s body. Columbia Police have not been able to make a positive victim identification at this time.

Strumpf, who’s jailed without bond, is expected to make his initial court appearance this afternoon. CPD’s investigation continues and anyone with information is urged to call Columbia Crimestoppers at (573) 875-TIPS.

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