Arsonists told to pay $150,196 for damage to Glen Burnie school

Fire at building that was under construction delayed its opening

April 07, 2005|By Andrea F. Siegel | Andrea F. Siegel,SUN STAFF

Two men have been ordered to repay the Anne Arundel County school system $150,196, after they pleaded guilty to setting a fire in September at Marley Elementary School that delayed the school's opening until last week.

Joseph Anthony Molineiro and Charles Edward Sawyer, both 21, pleaded guilty recently to second-degree arson in Anne Arundel County Circuit Court, prosecutors said yesterday. Lesser charges were dropped.

The Glen Burnie men were sentenced to five years in prison, with all of that time suspended except for one year of house arrest. Judge Joseph P. Manck also ordered them to serve five years of probation, perform 100 hours of community service and apologize to the school, according to court records.

The restitution figure represented the county's loss in a blaze that fire officials estimated caused more than $1 million in damage. Insurance paid for the rest, said Assistant State's Attorney Warren Davis III.

Three teenagers also were charged. Two were found delinquent of second-degree arson and committed to the Charles H. Hickey Jr. School, according to a spokeswoman for the prosecutor's office. The third was found delinquent of second-degree burglary and remanded to the juvenile authorities. All were from Glen Burnie.

The Glen Burnie school was to have opened after winter break. But the vandalism kept pupils in the older school and portable classrooms an extra three months while workers made repairs to a $16.3 million building that had been getting finishing touches.

Officials believe the group used construction materials to set several fires in the school, Davis said.

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