published Thursday, November 28th, 2013

Handyman sought after 3 found dead in Colorado fire

RYE, Colo. — Authorities in rural southern Colorado are searching for a handyman who lived at a home where three people were found dead after a fire.

Investigators planned to remove the bodies of the two women and a man Thursday, a day after the home in the town of Rye burned. The fire has been labeled arson, though it wasn't immediately clear whether the victims died in the fire or were dead when it started.

Authorities were looking for Harry Mapps, 59, a former handyman who rented a room at the home. Mapps is 6 feet tall, 135 pounds and has red hair and blue eyes and may have a graying beard. He last drove a blue 2004 Chrysler Town & Country minivan with either Texas or Colorado license plates.

Authorities hadn't ruled out the possibility that Mapps also perished in the fire.

The Pueblo County coroner planned to conduct autopsies Friday. Three children who lived at the home were at a relative's in Pueblo and escaped harm.

Two dogs survived the fire and were taken by animal control.

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