Man found dead after house fire had been killed, police say

Family suspects hate crime

INDIANAPOLIS - A man found dead after a house fire on Indianapolis' northeast side over the weekend was the victim of a homicide, police said.

Firefighters responded to a residential alarm just before 7 a.m. at 3921 Chateau Drive, near 38th Street and Post Road, and found the home on fire.

When firefighters went inside, they found Bryant Steele, 27, dead inside.

Police said Thursday that they had identified a person of interest in Steele's slaying, but that the individual had not been located.

Family members said Steele was openly gay and that they believe the fire may have been a hate crime.

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