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Wyo. man accused of spilling gasoline, lighting cigarette, and causing fire that killed girlfriend

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell May15,2024

RIVERTON, Wyo. (TCD) — Police recently arrested a 55-year-old man on suspicion of starting a fire that killed his 48-year-old girlfriend last month.

According to the Riverton Police Department, on April 26 at around 2:20 a.m., dispatchers received a call about a woman reportedly trapped inside a house fire on East Main Street. Riverton firefighters arrived and discovered Eve Newton deceased inside the home.

The Cowboy State Daily reports that officials found Newton in the bedroom with her upper body on the bed, and she was holding a pair of jeans. An autopsy determined Newton had soot in her airways, suggesting she was alive and breathing when the fire erupted. Police detectives also learned there were possibly accelerants in the residence.

According to the Cowboy State Daily, Newton’s boyfriend, Vurnon Doney, sustained minor burn and smoke inhalation injuries and was treated at SageWest Health Care. While in the hospital, Doney reportedly said he and Newton got into a dispute shortly before the fire.

Doney allegedly spent the night in his van and took his motorcycle to work the following day, and he needed to combine gasoline and oil for the vehicle.

Doney reportedly told authorities he went into his home to grab his gas can and got into an argument with Newton again. He then allegedly mixed gasoline and oil, and it spilled near his girlfriend’s bedroom. Doney reportedly told police he lit a cigarette, and the house was eventually engulfed in flames. He called 911 to report the fire.

According to the Cowboy State Daily, Doney told officials he initially attempted to put out the flames with water from the bathroom sink and shower, but it didn’t work.

Fire investigators reportedly discovered the flames began in Newton’s bedroom near her bed, and she was unable to escape.

According to an update posted May 9, police secured a warrant for Doney’s arrest on a charge of involuntary manslaughter. Officials took him into custody at a home on Blackfoot Avenue, and he was booked into the Fremont County Jail. If convicted, Doney faces up to 20 years in prison.

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Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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One thought on “Wyo. man accused of spilling gasoline, lighting cigarette, and causing fire that killed girlfriend”
  1. RhondaJohnson has such a tragic story, it’s unbelievable. The irresponsibility and recklessness displayed by the man in this situation is truly shocking. My heart goes out to the family and friends of the victim.

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