SPRING HILL, Fla. — Deputies handling an eviction saw smoke when they showed up to a house Wednesday morning on Haverhill Drive near Maplehurst Way in Spring Hill.
Just after 10 a.m., they set up a perimeter and called firefighters, as neighboring homes were evacuated.
“Suspicious items” could be seen in the house, deputies said, so the SWAT team was dispatched to clear the place.
Together, SWAT officers and firefighters made their way through the home, putting out small fires along the way. When they reached the master bedroom, they found a woman and a dog dead.
The Hernando County Sheriff’s Office says there were “accelerants” in the room, and investigators believe the woman may have been trying to burn down the house.
Her death appears linked to the fire, though a medical examiner in Leesburg is doing an autopsy to determine the cause for sure.
A 24-hour notice of eviction had been posted on the front door a day earlier, authorities said.