Hubbard house fire was ‘intentionally set’

The Kroeker family of 5 remains missing

Sheriff's deputies say the Kroeker family is unaccounted for following a fire at their Hubbard home, January 3, 2017. (Courtesy photo to KOIN)
Sheriff's deputies say the Kroeker family is unaccounted for following a fire at their Hubbard home, January 3, 2017. (Courtesy photo to KOIN)

HUBBARD, Ore. (KOIN) — Fires that swept through 3 structures in Hubbard were intentionally set and the case is now being treated as a criminal investigation.

Erin and Keith Kroecker and their 3 children remain unaccounted for more than a day after the fires erupted on their property in Hubbard, the Marion County Sheriff’s Office said. The body of one person was found, but authorities have not disclosed any information about that person.

The case has been slowed by both the extremely cold weather and by the amount of damage to the 3 buildings — a home, a shop and a detached garage.  The 3 structures are not close to each other.

A body was found in a burning house in Hubbard, January 3 2017. (KOIN)
A body was found in a burning house in Hubbard, January 3 2017. (KOIN)

Erin Kroeker, 39, Keith Kroeker, 42 and their 3 children live in the house. Neither investigators nor family members have heard from them.

Keith Kroeker’s father, Mike Kroeker, told KOIN 6 News earlier Wednesday that if this fire was intentionally set, he doesn’t know who could be responsible.

“I have no idea — Keith and Erin had no enemies in this world,”  Mike Kroeker told KOIN. “They were all liked by all the neighbors. The kids were well adjusted at school.”

Investigators with the Marion County Sheriff’s Department were able to go inside the building for the first time Wednesday morning to start looking for evidence. The investigation is complicated by the fact that the water used to put out the fire has turned to ice.

A body was found in a burning house in Hubbard, January 3 2017. (KOIN)
A body was found in a burning house in Hubbard, January 3 2017. (KOIN)