Arrest made in fatal Byron fire

Ex-husband being held on $10 million bond


OREGON – Duane Meyer has been arrested and charged with the deaths of his ex-wife Margaret “Maggie” Meyer and his 3-year-old son Amos, who died in a Byron house fire on Oct. 19, 2016.

Ogle County Sheriff Brian VanVickle announced at a press conference Wednesday, Oct. 9 that Duane Meyer, 37, was indicted by an Ogle County Grand Jury on Oct. 8 on four counts of first degree homicide, two counts of aggravated arson and one count of concealment of a homicidal death.

He was arrested at about 6 a.m. on Oct. 9 without incident, VanVickle said. Meyer was in possession of a loaded firearm and was additionally charged with unlawful use of a weapon.

He is now being held in the Ogle County Jail on a $10 million bond. He was arraigned the same day he was arrested.

Eric Morrow, Ogle County State’s Attorney, said during the press conference that the investigation into the fatal fire was “active and ongoing” until the last few weeks. He said it produced more than 35,000 pages of documents and other evidence.

“I would note, if the defendant is convicted of the … murder cases, this would be a natural life sentence,” Morrow said.

Duane Meyer was the person who called in the fire at about 6:40 a.m., telling officials he was there to pick up Amos. The State Fire Marshal official on the scene determined the fire was arson at that time.

At the time of the fire, Byron Fire Dept. officials said there was no fire visible from outside the home, at 2020 Silverthorn Ave. A small fire was found in the living room of the home, where Maggie Meyers, 31, was also found.

The Ogle County Sheriff’s Office began investigating the fire immediately, along with Byron Police, Illinois Police Zone 2 investigators, the Ogle County Coroner’s Office, Illinois State Police Crime Scene, the Illinois Fire Marshal as well as technical assistance from the Illinois Attorney General’s Office and the FBI.

Morrow said that in order to be released, Meyer would be required to post $1 million in cash.

Fatal fire pic 3pic