WILLARD -- The body found in last week's house fire has been identified as the brother of the home's owner, who remains the focus of the investigation of both the death and the fire.
Eric Daniel Lankford, 26, was identified from dental records earlier this week, Willard Police Chief Nate Thompson said Friday.
The younger Lankford shared the home with Jeremy Lankford, 28, still a "person of interest" in the ongoing investigation, Thompson said.
Two members of the Weber County Homicide Task Force -- a detective from the South Ogden force and another from Harrisville's police department -- are now assisting in the probe, he said.
Eric Lankford was found in the ruins of the 3 a.m. June 27 fire at 103 E. 100 North in Willard.
Jeremy Lankford was booked into Box Elder County Jail the same day of the fire and charged with obstruction of justice and failure to disclose his identity.
The misdemeanor charges filed in the Willard Justice Court stemmed from his locking himself in his truck when found three hours later at the fire scene and refusing to come out or talk to officers.
Thompson said Lankford has since been talking to police, up to a point.
"He's been cooperative, until the last time we interviewed him last week and he asked for a lawyer," Thompson said.
The Lankford brothers had been involved in a 1 a.m. altercation two hours before the fire broke out, details of which had not been previously released.
"I can comment on that now," Thompson said. "Eric had flagged down our officers."
The altercation consisted of Jeremy Lankford breaking his brother's computer equipment and TV, he said, and Eric Lankford responding by breaking out windows of the home, which is owned by Jeremy.
Jeremy Lankford had lived there three, possibly four, years, the younger brother only moving in recently, and living there off and on, Thompson said, adding that Eric Lankford was recently unemployed.
"Jeremy wouldn't talk to our officers, and Eric didn't want anything done, so there was no arrest because there was no assault, as it turned out."
Thompson attended Eric Lankford's autopsy June 28 and debunked rumors of bullet wounds on the body.
"It's still a suspicious death, but there were no gunshot wounds," he said, declining to comment further as to any obvious trauma to the body beyond injuries from a fire.
The misdemeanor charges against Lankford were dismissed earlier this week, but Thompson said they could be refiled at any time.
"It just means prosecutors want to wait to see what the end result of the investigation may be before deciding on appropriate charges," he said.
Box Elder County Attorney Steve Hadfield said the handling of the misdemeanor charges by the Willard City Attorney's Office is "entirely separate" from any charges his office would file, if anything is filed related to the fire and the death.
The Lankford brothers' family all live in California, where they are from, Thompson said. Investigators have talked to the brothers' mother, stepfather and sister "as to their general history, how they were together," he said.
He and Hadfield said autopsy results may not be announced for another six weeks.