Private investigator says Alan DuPras hired him just days before double murder

Jennifer DuPras and her mother Cynthia Houk were found shot to death on Dec. 11

FRESNO COUNTY, Calif. - Just days before Jennifer DuPras and Cynthia Houk were found murdered in their home, a private investigator says Alan DuPras hired him to track his estranged wife. DuPras' is in Fresno County Jail and his bail set at a little more than $3 million.

Last December, DuPras actually invited the CBS 47/KSEE 24 crew into his home, about 24 hours after the bodies of Jennifer DuPras and her mother Cynthia Houk were found. He said a few days before that -- he hired a private detective to follow his estranged wife.

"You could just imagine chills running up my spine," said Michael Braa.

Private investigator Michael Braa remembers that December day when news broke of 55-year-old Jennifer DuPras and her mother 88-year-old Cynthia Houk found murdered in their Fresno home. Just days prior, Braa says Jennifer's estranged husband Alan DuPras wanted his services and told him about his looming divorce, concerned about his financial future.

"He was upset because he had prepared for retirement and this divorce was straining that," said Braa.

According to Braa, DuPras told him the marriage started failing as Jennifer became more involved with a French club as president.

"And he believed that she was seeing somebody in the club and that's the crux of the investigation. He wanted me to find out who she was seeing if anybody in this club. And yeah, he definitely had some angst towards this club," said Braa.

Investigators say on December 4 of 2017, Alan DuPras set the Alliance Francaise De Fresno on fire. He's also accused of torching Cynthia Houk's car last November. Both cases of arson before hiring Braa to track Jennifer's daily whereabouts.

"I told him that we would rent him a GPS device. He could take it, put it in her car and he was to contact me when it was in there," said Braa.

But Braa says the tracking device never left DuPras' Kingsburg home until after the murders.

"From Monday when I gave it to him at 11 o'clock until it was taken into police impound, it was down there the entire time," said Braa.

Braa is relieved he never started the investigation and didn't have any information to offer on Jennifer DuPras' alleged boyfriend.

"If this would have been a case where I had searched for this alleged lover and found him, and he would have done something to the lover, that's our worst nightmare," said Braa.

DuPras faces two counts of murder, two counts of arson, one count of possessing assault weapons and one count of vandalism.

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