SMITHFIELD — An investigation is underway after the body of a 74-year-old man was found by his wife at their home, authorities said Tuesday.

Harold Buzzell was found unresponsive on a bathroom floor Sunday, Somerset County sheriff’s Chief Deputy Mike Mitchell said. Buzzell’s cause of death is still under investigation, Mitchell said, but investigators are working to determine if a gas leak may have been a factor.

“We gave the medical examiners all the information that they need in this investigation, but they’re the ones that are handling that investigation,” Mitchell said. “I know there’s no foul play, there’s no evidence of any foul play.”

An autopsy was scheduled for Tuesday.

First responders from the Smithfield and Norridgewock fire departments responded to the scene around 11 p.m. Sunday, along with Somerset County deputies and Delta Ambulance.

Smithfield Fire Chief Louis Batista said Tuesday that firefighters on the scene reported high levels of carbon monoxide inside Buzzell’s home, but said the official cause of death was still uncertain.


“(The carbon monoxide tester) was reading high, that’s all we know,” he said. “I’m not 100% sure if it was an issue with our readers, but I know it was going off.”

Buzzell’s home was constructed less than three years ago, Batista said, and the couple had moved in within the last year.

Mitchell said first responders found two carbon monoxide detectors in the house, one of which was unplugged and the other was “not operational.”

“What we’re expecting is carbon monoxide,” Mitchell said. “This is a brand new constructed home, the people had moved in less than one year ago and it appears that the levels (of carbon monoxide) were really high.”

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