MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) - Family and friends identified Erica and Steve Lankford as the victims in an apparent double homicide in the Semmes area June 21, 2013.
The Mobile County Sheriffs Office says authorities were responding to a fire at their home on Meadow lane and Kings Branch Drive S. just outside the Semmes city limits.
Investigators said when they entered the home, they discovered the pair had been murdered.
Authorities believe the fire was set to try and destroy evidence.
Relatives of Lankford released the following statement to FOX10:
"The family is indeed going through a tough time & seeking closure & justice. We are deeply saddened by this tragic event. Steve & Erica were a blessing to our entire family. They absolutely loved being around all their family members. We will miss them dearly."
"It's a great loss. Great loss," said one of the Lankford's neighbors who did not want to be identified. "They were good people. Steve was a good man, a hard working man. Whatever he could do for you he would do it."
Sheriff's investigators say the department is following up on multiple leads in the case.
Some residents said they saw a white pickup truck at the residence Friday night and a man speaking with Mr. Lankford.
Several residents said they heard four gunshots sometime after 9:30 p.m. and then saw the pickup truck drive away.
The Lankford's teenaged daughter, who relatives say is home from college, arrived at the house to find it up in flames.
Authorities said they are awaiting autopsy results and plan to release further details in the coming weeks.
FOX10 News will continue to follow this developing story and bring you the details as they happen.
The Mobile County Sheriffs Office is wrapping up an undercover investigation aimed at cracking down on local scrap metal businesses.
Students at Davidson High School are dedicating their annual Christmas Concert Monday, December 9 to their late band director Tony Pike.
Look for a big drop in our temperatures for Tuesday.
The Democratic leader in the Alabama House is calling for the Legislature to use its election-year session to approve a state lottery.
Shaun Cassidy was slapped with a $1,155,00 bond Monday afternoon. He was arrested Friday night on multiple charges of sodomy and enticing a child.
Robertsdale police said a man was the victim of a hit and run Saturday, around 30 minutes before the start of the city's annual Christmas parade.