Iowa family found dead in Mexico, probably killed by gas leak in water heater

A water heater that "dripped gasoline, perhaps from use or lack of maintenance" was probably the source of the toxic fumes that led to the death of an Iowa family last week in their vacation home in Mexico, one of the prosecutors of the country On Monday, the chief prosecutor of the coastal state of Quintana Roo, Miguel Angel Pech, told the Radio Formula station that a "high level" of gas was found in the rented condominium where the couple was staying, according to the Associated Press.

Iowa officials identified the family as Kevin Sharp, 41, his wife, Amy Sharp, 38, and their children Sterling, 12, and Adrianna, 7. They were from Creston, Iowa.

  Photo provided by the Fiscal Office of Quintana Roo, a fireman examines a gas stove in the rented condominium where an Iowa couple and their two children died in Tulum, Mexico. Mexican authorities said on Saturday, March 24, 2018 that the autopsies of his two sons died from inhaling toxic gas in the rented condominium on the Caribbean coast of Mexico, but there were no signs of foul play or suicide. (Prosecutor's Office of Quintana Roo via AP)

In this undated photo provided by the Office of Prosecutors of Quintana Roo, a firefighter examines a gas stove in the rented condominium where an Iowa couple and their two children died in Tulum, Mexico.


Autopsies indicated that the family died from inhaling toxic gas in the Tulum complex, but the source had not been determined.

Jana Weland, Amy Sharp's cousin, told the Des Moines Registry on Monday that they were informed of the alleged origin of the leak by the US Consulate. UU in Mexico. The family is working to have the bodies returned to the United States for a funeral.

Photographs revealed by Pech's office over the weekend showed investigators in anti-pollution suits and firefighters with air tanks examining gas connections to a stove in the condominium in Tulum. The office said the investigators "carried out a physical investigation of the gas connections in the room" and that the civil defense office of Tulum would issue a technical report on the findings.

week after the family went on vacation. The Creston police contacted the US Department of State. UU And the bodies were found on Friday during a wellness check at the condominium in Tulum, on the Yucatan Peninsula.

Quintana Roo prosecutors said the family had died between 36 and 48 hours the time they were found Friday at the Tao condominium complex.

The developer of the condo complex where the deaths occurred declined to comment on Friday.

The Creston News Advertiser newspaper in Iowa reported that the family flew to Cancun on March 14. According to her sister, Amy Sharp sent a text message to her mother the next day to say they had arrived in Tulum, but the relatives had already They did not hear anything from the family.

The sister, Renee Hoyt, said the Sharps were scheduled to return to Tulum. I know. UU last week. They were ready to leave the Cancun airport on Wednesday and fly to San Luis on a non-stop flight.

When the family did not arrive in San Luis, the family members contacted the authorities, he said.

The father, Kevin, used to compete in stock cars at Adams County Speedway in Corning, earning eight victories over his career.

Bob Harris, the long-time public announcer on the track, told the Des Moines Register that Sharp was nicknamed "The Sharpshooter" and hailed him as a "true family man."

Cars n. Sharp's 2 had themes of things that were important to him, such as bad cancer awareness, according to the newspaper.

"He was really a champion on both sides of the fence in the circuit," said Harris.

Dom Calicchio of Fox News and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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