Woman found dead on Christmas in Geneseo house fire

by Claudia Loucks correspondent

A female victim was found dead late Christmas Day during a house fire in Geneseo, according to a news release from the Geneseo Police Department.

The press release states: “On Friday, Dec. 25, at approximately 11:32 p.m., Geneseo Fire Rescue Protection District, Geneseo Ambulance, Henry County Sheriff’s Office and the Geneseo Police Department responded to a house fire at 420 East Pine St. in Geneseo.”

When Geneseo officers arrived at the scene, they observed smoke coming from the roof of the residence.

“Two officers were able to gain entry into the residence where they located a single female victim lying on the floor near the rear door. Officers removed the victim from the residence. Geneseo Ambulance personnel arrived on the scene and assessed the patient who was determined to be deceased,” the release stated. “The identity of the victim is not being released pending notification of relatives by the Henry County Coroner’s Office.”

The fire was extinguished by Fire Department personnel. Two attached residences also suffered smoke damage, according to the information from the Geneseo Police Department, which also stated that the cause of the fire is under investigation by the Illinois State Fire Marshall’s Office with the assistance of the Geneseo Fire and Police Departments.

Geneseo Chief of Police Gene Karzin said Monday the woman found dead in a house fire on Christmas Day has been identified as Connie Pond, 73, of 420 East Pine St.

He said an autopsy was conducted at the request of the Henry County Coroner’s Office and the preliminary cause of death was reported as smoke inhalation.

The fire remains under investigation and Karzin said, “At this point the cause of the fire is still under investigation, however we do not believe there is any suspicious nature to the cause of the fire.”

Anyone with additional information is asked to contact the Geneseo Police Department at 309-944-5141.