Police in Scotland have launched a murder inquiry after a 71-year-old died in an arson attack at a home in Kilmarnock. The fire erupted at the house on Kilmaurs Road shortly before midnight on Saturday (12 February).
Firefighters and paramedics rushed to the scene but the woman was pronounced dead at the scene. A 41 year-old man was taken by ambulance to Crosshouse Hospital to receive treatment for serious injuries and is in a stable condition. A 41 year-old woman was also within the property but did not require medical treatment.
A number of local residents attempted to extinguish the fire and were treated at the scene for smoke inhalation.
A joint investigation by the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service and Police Scotland was conducted and determined that the fire was deliberate and resulted in the death of the victim.
Specialist forensic staff and detectives remain at the scene as part of the murder investigation and additional uniformed officers are in the area.
Detective Chief Inspector Allan Burton is leading the investigation. He said today: "The outbreak of fire within the house on Kilmaurs Road has resulted in the death of an elderly woman. Following a joint investigation with our colleagues at the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, we now know that this was a targeted and deliberate act.
"Local residents are understandably shocked and I would like to acknowledge the bravery of those neighbours and passing motorists who raised the alarm and attempted to do what they could to extinguish the blaze."
Anyone with information is asked to contact the Incident Room based at Kilmarnock Police Station on the 101 number. Alternatively contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 where information can be given in complete confidence.