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34th Tacoma Homicide of 2021: James Elliott
On New Year’s Eve 2021, 83-year-old James Elliott was in his three-story house at 2 Rosemont down a windy road in Tacoma’s North End. He was alone in the house at 6:30pm when a young boy playing nearby smelled smoke. He soon discovered that James Elliott’s house was on fire. The boy alerted his mother who attempted to enter the house, but the porch was engulfed in flames. She ran around to the back door, but it too was on fire. When the Tacoma Fire Department was able to put out the fire, they found James Elliott’s body in the bathroom at the rear of the house near the back door.
The Medical Examiner initially ruled that James Elliott’s death was due to smoke inhalation and an accident, but a subsequent investigation by the ATF found that this fire was one of a string of twenty fires set by a woman who seemed intent on setting fires to occupied buildings. She was arrested about a month after James Elliott’s death and eventually charged with his murder. Investigators found credit cards and other items taken from the home of James Elliott in the possession of the woman. James Elliott is the 34th and last Tacoma homicide of 2021.
The house at 2 Rosemount had been the home of the Elliott family for over half a century. It was a gathering place at holidays and special occasions. The senselessness of James’s death and the loss of both him and the home leave only memories for his family and friends.
As always, the comment section is reserved for those who knew James Elliott and want to share thoughts or memories of him.
Special Note: Tacoma Stories will be taking the month of June off from writing about homicides. This is due to my needing to have surgery this week and to allow me time to recover. Wayback Wednesdays will continue. We’ll start on 2022 Tacoma homicides beginning Monday, July 3, 2023.
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