Providence crime scene may be related to suspicious body found in Lincoln

Vacant lot off Lincoln Meadows Drive where fire crews found body.
Vacant lot off Lincoln Meadows Drive where fire crews found body.

LINCOLN, R.I. (WPRI) — Police are investigating whether a victim of a possible shooting in Providence could be the person found dead in a vacant lot ten miles away in Lincoln. Firefighters made the gruesome discovery Sunday night after responding to a brush fire on Lincoln Meadows Drive.

Lincoln Police Capt. Philip Gould said crews went to the empty lot near the Smithfield line at about 10 p.m. to put out the fire.

“Lime Rock Fire Department came out, and while they were taking care of the fire they discovered a body on the property,” he said. A number of new homes are being built in the neighborhood, but construction had not yet begun on the lot where the fire started.

Investigators do not yet know the cause of the person’s death, but Gould said it’s considered suspicious.

Late Monday afternoon, Gould revealed that the victim is an adult man. He said investigators are working with state police, the state fire marshal, and the state medical examiner to identify him.

The captain said it does appear that the fire and the death are connected.

According to Providence Police Major David Lapatin, detectives are investigating if the death is connected to a possible deadly shooting Sunday night on Gordon Avenue.

“Police officers responded there and found what they believe was a crime scene,” he explained. “There was some blood. There was no victim to be found. No assailant.”

Lapatin said it is not definitive that the two incidents are connected, as the victim has not been identified. But he said detectives in Providence have a “strong interest” in the Lincoln case.

“We were told that the shooting could have been fatal, so we began a search of the area,” he said. “Put some information out and now a few hours later, Lincoln Police came up with a body that they believe was badly charred and burnt.”

Lapatin also said investigators located a car in Pawtucket that is connected to the Gordon Avenue crime scene.

Todd Wallace contributed to this report.