Second Townshend victim also died of gunshot wounds

TOWNSHEND — The cause of death for the man inside the cabin that burned down on Shirley Circle last month was "gunshot wounds" to his abdomen, according to a death certificate.

Steven Lovely, 43, had been living in the cabin with Amanda Sanderson, 35, when they were allegedly killed by an associate named Justin Orwat, 46, of Springfield, Mass. Sanderson died of gunshot wounds to the head, according to a death certificate released earlier this month.

Investigators have said the two victims' deaths were considered homicides. Orwat was arrested on charges of aggravated murder and first-degree arson.

A dispute over stealing had allegedly occurred after Orwat and the two victims consumed drugs, according to an affidavit. Orwat's wife told detectives she heard gunshots and arguing, and Orwat told her as they drove away from the cabin that a gun would be burned in the fire.

Lovely died within minutes and Sanderson died within minutes or seconds, according to the death certificates. Lovely was born in Holyoke, Mass., and worked in automotive sales.

Reach staff writer Chris Mays at, at @CMaysBR on Twitter and 802-254-2311, ext. 273.


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