Bond set at $5 million for man accused in deaths of four people in Laurel

(Cedar County, NE) -- Bond is set for the man accused of killing four people and setting fire to two houses in Laurel, in northeast Nebraska.

A Cedar County judge set bail at $5 million for 42 year old Jason Jones, who is accused of killing 86 year old Gene Twiford, 85 year old Janet Twiford, 55 year old Dana Twiford and 53 year old Michele Ebeling last Thursday. In setting the bail amount, the judge said that Jones is, “an extreme danger to public safety.” Jones remains hospitalized in Lincoln after suffering what the Nebraska State Patrol called serious burns over a large portion of his body during the incidents.

Investigators say around 3:00 the morning of August 4th, Cedar County 911 was called for a report of an explosion and fire at 209 Elm Street. Once the fire was out, Ebeling was found dead inside with a gunshot wound. While on the scene of the fire at Ebeling's, crews were called to a home three blocks away, at 503 Elm Street, for another fire. Once the fire was out there, the Twiford family was found dead inside. The Twifords had also apparently been shot.

Physical evidence at both scenes led investigators to identify Jones as a suspect. Following repeated attempts to have Jones exit his home, which was across the street from Ebeling's home, the SWAT Team made entry and found Jones in a bedroom with severe burns. He is facing ten charges, including four counts each of first-degree murder and use of a firearm to commit a felony and two counts of first-degree arson. An court appearance for Jones will be scheduled once he is discharged from the hospital.

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