Couple found in burning home dead of murder-suicide

Posted: Friday, April 12, 2002

NOME (AP) -- Two bodies found in a burning home in Nome died in an apparent murder-suicide, Nome Police Chief Ralph Taylor said Thursday.

Taylor said the bodies found Saturday have been identified as husband and wife Mark Koenig, 45, and Sharla Koenig, 20.

The Koenigs were found in their home after the fire was brought under control. When firefighters arrived at 4:50 a.m. the house was engulfed in flames, Taylor said.

From evidence at the scene, interviews and autopsies, Taylor said police concluded the deaths were not caused by the fire.

''We suspect that Mark shot Sharla and then shot himself,'' he said.

Mark Koenig had a history of domestic violence, Taylor said.

Police are still investigating the case and have not determined what caused the fire. Taylor said police do not know if the fire was an accident or intentionally set.

The condition of the bodies will make it difficult to determine whether the couple died before or after the fire began, he said. He has not yet received a full report from State Medical Examiner's Office.

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