From left, John D. Careaga, 43; Christale Lynn Careaga, 37; Johnathon F. Higgins, 16; Hunter E. Schaap, 16. (Kitsap County Sheriff’s Department)

From left, John D. Careaga, 43; Christale Lynn Careaga, 37; Johnathon F. Higgins, 16; Hunter E. Schaap, 16. (Kitsap County Sheriff’s Department)

Sheriff’s Department: Focus is on solving murders

The department warns that reports of a medical marijuana grow on the Careaga family’s property should not distract residents “from the real focus” of the investigation — the murder of four people — and encourage residents to “continue to help by calling in with tips to help solve these murders.”

SEABECK — There was a “small marijuana grow that had a medicinal authorization posted” on the Careaga family property, the Kitsap County Sheriff’s Department reported on its Facebook page Feb. 3.

“Likewise, detectives did locate some cash and secured it for safekeeping from the burned-out residence. This family were business owners and it is not unusual for a business owner to have cash on hand. There were several shell casings recovered from the outside of the residence. At this point in the investigation, we are aware that there was some target shooting at the residence, which was common.”

The department warned that the marijuana grow should not distract residents “from the real focus” of the investigation — the murder of four people — and encourage residents to “continue to help by calling in with tips to help solve these murders. If you know some information about these homicides, you are urged to call Detective Lissa Gundrum at 360-337-5669.”

Detectives have confirmed that one of the victims, John D. Careaga, was at the Camp Union Store around 9 p.m. Jan. 27, the night of the murders at the Careaga home. The department asks for calls from anyone who had contact with or saw Careaga around that time.

Detectives are also requesting additional assistance from residents who live on Holly Road, Lake Tahuyeh Road, Sandhill Road and Seabeck-Holly Road (or general area) that may have any video facing the roadway between 7 p.m. Jan. 27 and 2 p.m. Jan. 29.

The department reported that detectives have received “and appreciate the numerous leads and continue to follow up on all tips. Callers can remain anonymous.”

Crime Stoppers of Puget Sound is offering a $4,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the suspect or suspects. Call 1-800-222-TIPS or go to www.crimestoppers.com.

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