Highland Park double murder: Man fatally shot his brothers before setting house on fire, police say

A man has been charged with two counts of first-degree murder for allegedly killing his brothers in Highland Park earlier this week.

Jeffrey S. Austwick, 54, was arrested on Friday morning in St. Louis, Missouri.

On Wednesday, a fire broke out around 3:50 a.m. at a home in the 1700 block of Park Avenue West. An officer from Tower Ladder 33 did an initial sweep outside the home when the two victims were found.

As crews began putting out the flames, firefighters went into the home through a window to search for any other victims. No one else was found inside.

Initially, police said the two victims appeared to have died from "suspicious injuries." Hours later, the Lake County Coroner's Office identified the victims as 63-year-old Marc Austwick and 60-year-old John Austwick.

Based on autopsy results, the coroner said both of the brothers died from multiple gunshot wounds and their deaths were ruled homicides.

"It’s pretty creepy, I’ve lived here a long time. I’ve never seen anything like this," said one neighbor.

FOX 32 confirmed the property owner, the brothers' mother, died just last week - she was 84 years old.

According to law enforcement, the three brothers met at the home to discuss the property. Sometime after they all arrived, Jeffrey allegedly shot and killed Marc and John and then set the home on fire. Jeffrey fled the scene in his vehicle, police said.

Police issued a nationwide arrest warrant for Jeffrey on Wednesday night. He was eventually taken into custody on Friday around 5:30 a.m. at a park in St. Louis.

Jeffrey remains in custody in Missouri, pending his first court hearing.