Home of 3 jailed suspects accused of helping Stroupe II catches fire

BUNCOMBE CO., N.C. (WSPA) – Authorities are investigating a fire at the home of three suspects accused of helping murder and kidnapping suspect Phillip Stroupe II.

Natalie Bailey with the Buncombe County Sheriff’s Office confirmed there was a fire at the Barnardsville home of Jennifer Elaine Hawkins, 40, Frederick Aurther Badgero Jr., 45, and 23-year-old Larry Jay Hawkins III.

Each has been charged with felony accessory after the fact of first-degree murder and harboring an escapee and are currently in jail.

Authorities say the three helped Phillip Stroupe II during a six-day manhunt during which he’s accused of committing several crimes, including kidnapping and murdering 68-year-old Tommy Bryson of Mills River.

Bailey said Friday morning that the investigation into the house fire is in the early stages.

“The scene is being processed, and the Asheville-Buncombe Arson Task Force is on scene,” Bailey said.

According to the jail’s website, Badgero Jr. is still behind bars on $250,000 bond.

Hawkins III and Hawkins are also still behind bars with bond set at $200,000 bond.

Jennifer Hawkins (left), Frederick Badgero (center), Larry Hawkins (right) (From: Buncombe Co. Sheriff’s Office)