SEATTLE — 11:14 p.m. update: Seattle police are investigating the death of a woman in the Lake City neighborhood as a homicide. A suspect was arrested in connection to her death Monday night.
Police said officers contacted the 23-year-old suspect in downtown Seattle hours after the initial call in Lake City.
The suspect was detained and taken to the Seattle Police Department's homicide office, where he was interviewed by detectives.
The suspect will be booked into the King County Jail for investigation of murder.
Seattle police are investigating a suspicious death after a woman's body was found in the basement of her home Monday morning.
The news spread quickly through this tight-knit Lake City neighborhood.
"Just makes me feel sick," said Monica Rappin, her voice breaking. "I don't know what could have happened."
A body was found in the basement of her longtime neighbor's home.
Those who live here said the noise from first responders initially alerted them.
"I believe one of the newsmen told me it was a female in her basement that had been killed," said Rappin. "And I know her bedrooms are all down in her basement."
Seattle police came to the woman's house to do a welfare check just after 10 a.m. Monday.
When they arrived, they could see smoke. So they called the Seattle Fire Department.
"We saw about six or seven firetrucks kind of pass by, which made us a little nervous," said Robert Castaneda.
Castaneda was working at a local State Farm office with a bird's-eye view of the scene.
"So we turned around, looked out in the back -- we have a little back patio," he said,
"and noticed there was little bit of smoke coming out from the house. Then, all of a sudden, we heard a lot of units, Seattle PD units, come through."
By the time Chopper 7 was overhead, Seattle police said, they knew there was a body in the house.
"Once we were able to make sure there's no one else in the house, then we back off. We protect the scene and we wait for a search warrant,” said Detective Mark Jamieson, of the Seattle Police Department.
Residents along the street are stunned.
"It's just tragic," Annik Stahl. "I can't believe it. I hope they find out what happens."
One eyewitness revealed two things the police would not confirm: that the victim was stabbed and that a neighbor may have had something to do with it.
After 5 p.m., relatives confirmed the victim is Jennifer Ayers, a single mother.
Cox Media Group