Murder Suspect Has Local Ties

By: James Steiner
By: James Steiner

A News channel-8 investigation involving a Nevada man, accused of mass murder in Arizona...may have also re open a long-cold arson case in Washoe Valley.
News Channel 8's James Steiner joins us tonight with the more on the capture of this fugitive from "America's Most Wanted."
William Craig Miller was wanted by Arizona authorities...for five murders in the Phoenix area.
Prosecutors, there, say he killed the victims...because some were going to testify that he burned down his Scottsdale home in November.
We did our own investigating...and found out Miller owned a house in Washoe Valley that mysteriously caught fire in October of 2004.
Steve Zettler remembers the fire like it was yesterday.
He recalls a moving van, outside Miller's house, several hours before.
One thing struck him as strange...when he saw Miller moving out.
"they tied a blue tarp to the end of it. And the other end to the house. You couldn't see the front door anymore. I could care less what they were taking in and out of the house."
He didn't think anything of it...until the house went up in flames eight hours later.
Reno fire says the cause is still undetermined.
But, Zettler saw Miller a few days later.
"he asked me if I knew about the trash in the basement. I said I never been in the basement. He said well it's full of trash and that's what must have started the fire. That's sounds like an odd statement from somebody."
Since Miller's arrest on murder charges, and learning that three of his houses burned to the ground, one in which he was charged with arson, former neighbors are remembering a few odd conversations with him, after the fire.
Terri Colthorp: "he called me and said did flames ever shoot out of the furnace. I started laughing cause you wouldn't live in a house if flames are shooting out of the furnace."
Colthorp lived in the house for 13 years...and sold it to Miller in October of 2003.
He hadn't even been there a year...before this mysterious fire.
"it was just too strange that we lived there for all these years and had no problems. He's here a year and it goes up in smoke."
Colthorp thinks Miller's business wasn't doing too well...and he needed money.
She says he owned a chemical cleaning company called "puroclean"...which specialized in cleaning up after fires and murder scenes.
"he used to tell us that he knew how to make things, how people did things so they could cover up."
Colthorp says Miller also told her how...he got his money to start his business.
"he said he was badly burned by a faulty microwave which was recalled after he was burned. He said that settlement money bought him the franchise for puroclean."
Although, Arizona authorities say *no motive has been given...as to why Miller burned down his Scottsdale home in November.
Former Washoe Valley neighbors have their own suspicions.
And...hearing why prosecutors say he killed those five people, because they were witnesses in *that arson fire, they're grateful they didn't come forward with *more information about the 2004 fire.
"that really is the scary part. Because he gave me so much information. You could tell he was trying to prep me about what happened or could have happened. If I gave that evidence to the fire marshal and they started a case on him here. Very possible i'd be dead now."


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