A 30-year-old man was arrested Friday morning after firefighters found his girlfriend dead in a burned Zephyrhills duplex.
Christopher Peterson was charged with violating a pretrial release condition on a domestic battery charge barring him from making contact with his girlfriend, according to the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office.
Tiffany Milam, 26, was found dead after firefighters arrived at the engulfed apartment at 37750 State Road 54 in Zephyrhills about 1:45 a.m., deputies said.
“She died in the bed approximately two feet away from the door,” said Sheriff Chris Nocco at a news conference.
Milam had no obvious signs of injury, a deputy said.
Peterson has told investigators he woke from bed after smelling smoke and ran, Nocco said. He said he did not attempt to help his girlfriend because he couldn’t see her in the smoke-filled apartment.
After his arrest, deputies found he had several bruises, which Peterson told investigators were from a fight with a neighbor who demanded to know why he wasn’t trying to save his girlfriend, Nocco said.
The pretrial release condition stemmed from Peterson’s May 2 arrest for domestic battery, Nocco said. Deputies had previously gone out to the duplex on two occasions related to domestic fights.