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Missing Woman’s House Explodes In Joliet Township

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Firefighters on the scene of a house explosion in East Joliet. (CBS)

Firefighters on the scene of a house explosion in East Joliet. (CBS)


UPDATED: 7/15/2013 10:23 a.m.

CHICAGO (CBS) — An explosion and fire inside the home of a missing Joliet woman is being investigated as arson, while the woman’s boyfriend, who was severely burned in the incident, is the prime suspect, police said Monday.

James Borg, 45, suffered burns over 70 percent of his body and investigators believe he tampered with the home’s gas line, causing the blast.

James Borg. (Credit: Will County Sheriff)

James Borg. (Credit: Will County Sheriff)

Will County Deputy Police Chief Ken Kaupas said Borg is also a person of interest in the disappearance of Anne Gay, who was last seen on June 10.

Anne Gay (Credit: Handout photo via Will County Sheriff)

Anne Gay (Credit: Handout photo via Will County Sheriff)

Police on Monday conducted a search of the first floor of the damaged home, but would not reveal any details.

Borg and Gay had a troubled relationship, Kaupas said.

Police answered 13 calls for domestic disturbances at the home since Jan. 1.

Both Gay and Borg have been arrested for domestic battery.

Borg is being treated at Loyola University Medical Center.

The blast resulted in a large fire at the home in unincorporated Joliet Township.

A neighbor said there was an explosion at the home at 206 Southeast Circle Drive around 10 p.m.

Anne Gay was last seen by family and friends on June 10, and didn’t show up for her job as a waitress at the Louis’ Family Restaurant in Joliet the next day.

Fire crews had a hard time battling the blaze because there weren’t enough fire hydrants near the home, so water had to be shuttled in.

“We called on our neighboring communities all around us and they brought tanker trucks and we had enough water on the scene to hold the fire in check,” said East Joliet Fire Chief Robert Scholtes.

This home was destroyed after an explosion in Joliet. (Credit: Susanna Song)

This home was destroyed after an explosion in Joliet. (Credit: Susanna Song)