MECCA - Emergency workers said they are expecting to find the body of man who threatened to kill himself buried in the rubble of a house that burned along with a barn Saturday afternoon.
Firefighters at first were held at bay by small explosions from the barn and reports of shots being fired.
Emergency 911 dispatch reports identified the man as Daniel L. Jibotian, 53, of 4894 North Park Ave. Ext. N.E., the site of the fires.
Fire destroys a house late Saturday afternoon at 4948 North Park Ave. in Mecca after a barn burned on the property north of Bristol-Champion Townline Road.
Crews remained on the scene late Saturday at the property just north of Geauga Portage Easterly Road at the Mecca and Bristol township border, and the investigation will continue today, officials said.
The initial call came in at 3:15 p.m. for a barn fire with flames showing through the roof.
Four minutes later, responding firefighters were told that explosions were coming from the barn, according to a 911 Center report.
A 911 call was received at 3:22 p.m. from a woman who said her husband was suicidal after she told him she wanted a divorce, the report states. He sent her a text message that stated, "I am crazy Daniel Louis Jibotian 3/18/60 - 04/06/13 Boom," according to the 911 report.
Emergency crews arrived about 3:23 p.m. to find the barn fully engulfed but were held back at first by law enforcement because of the reports of shots fired.
"It was from ammo that was kept in the barn," Trumbull County sheriff's Deputy Steve Sabulsky told Tribune Chronicle newspartner WYTV 33 News.
"We were advised by family members that he was definitely unstable, and that he was a hunter, there were weapons in the house, in the barn area. When we checked the barn area, we found a lot of casings that went off because of the heat," he said.
Smoke was reported coming from a window of the house at about 3:30 p.m., then from the attic area about 10 minutes later. Police unsuccessfully tried to contact Jibotian, and were unable to get into the house, the 911 report states.
Officers approached the house with guns drawn, according to reports.
Sabulsky said when they backed off because of the smoke rolling out, fearing a backflash if they opened the door.
Shortly before 5:15 p.m., the house was engulfed in flames, according to emergency reports. A chicken coop also was destroyed by fire.
A foam truck was later requested from the Youngstown Air Reserve Station, and the Champion fire department also supplied water to help contain the blaze. Tankers ferried water from the Mosquito Creek Reservoir, according to reports.
The state fire marshal was on the scene and planned to return at 9 a.m. today.