Possible suspect admits he was near the scene of deadly Schenectady fire

Posted at: 03/06/2014 5:53 PM
Updated at: 03/06/2014 8:01 PM
By: Dan Bazile

A man and three kids died in the fire on Hulett Street in Schenectady in May 2013.
A man and three kids died in the fire on Hulett Street in Schenectady in May 2013.
Photo: File / WNYT

SCHENECTADY -- Edward Leon, 41, was not available when we knocked on his door in Gloversville. We spoke to him on the phone. He says it's been a rough couple of weeks for him with federal agents talking to everyone he knows, including his children, as they investigate the Hulett Street fire in Schenectady.

The home went up in flames back in May last year.  Police say the blaze killed David Terry, 32, and his three children, Layah, Michael and Donavan. Family members say another child, 5 year-old Safire, who was in the house at the time, survived and she's still recovering from burns.

Soon after the fire, police arrested Robert Butler. He was hit with federal charges in the case. However, those charges were dropped last month. His attorney told NewsChannel13 at the time that Butler was innocent, and there was another suspect.

Leon says he's not that suspect. He says that one of the victims, David Terry, was having a sexual relationship with his girlfriend. He says he went to Hulett Street the morning of the fire to try to meet with Terry face to face.

Leon says he was in the area when the fire started but he had nothing to do with it. He also admits he did send anonymous text messages to Terry with the signature "undertaker." But he says "undertaker" was just a simple phone signature and he doesn't feel they were threatening.

Attorney Daniel Stewart, who represents one of the victim's family members says Leon has been on the radar for a while and the family feels he may have been involved.