Authorities mum on how NH woman, son died at home

Police are seen at the end of the road  in Auburn, N.H. Tuesday, Nov. 9, 2010 where authorities said a woman and her young son where found dead inside a home. (AP Photo/Jim Cole)
AP
Police are seen at the end of the road in Auburn, N.H. Tuesday, Nov. 9, 2010 where authorities said a woman and her young son where found dead inside a home. (AP Photo/Jim Cole)
Posted Nov. 09, 2010, at 5:18 a.m.
A home is seen in Auburn, N.H. Tuesday, Nov. 9, 2010 where authorities said a woman and her young son where found dead inside. (AP Photo/Jim Cole)
AP
A home is seen in Auburn, N.H. Tuesday, Nov. 9, 2010 where authorities said a woman and her young son where found dead inside. (AP Photo/Jim Cole)

AUBURN, N.H. — The deaths of a woman and her young son at their home remained a mystery Tuesday as authorities said they were investigating whether a crime had occurred and that autopsy results still were pending.

The woman’s husband and young son were hospitalized and were recovering from undisclosed injuries.

A man who lived in the Auburn home, Christopher Smeltzer, grew up in Salem, where a neighbor of his mother’s said he often would bring his wife, his 4-year-old son and his daughter, who just celebrated her seventh birthday.

Kathy LaChance said her two children played with Smeltzer’s children.

“They’re going to need a lot of time to heal,” she said. “He knows he’s got us for anything.”

Police said Chris Smeltzer was arrested after a hit-and-run crash on Oct. 26 in Salem, about 20 miles from Auburn. Smeltzer, 37, was due in court on Nov. 22. He was accused of rear-ending a car at an intersection and then driving away.

Autopsies were being performed on the two bodies, which were found Monday in the home in Auburn, a town of about 5,000 residents east of Manchester. It was unclear what led authorities to the home.

“We’re spending our time investigating if a crime was committed, and if so, by whom,” Assistant Attorney General Jane Young said, without providing details. “That’s sort of been our focus.”

Neighbors said they didn’t know the Smeltzers well. The road leading to the home remained blocked off Tuesday. Police had cordoned off an outbuilding near the house that appeared to be a garage or shed.

Associated Press Writer Holly Ramer contributed to this report.

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