Fire nets man jail time

BY STACI WILSON

The Binghamton, N.Y., area man who intentionally set a fire that damaged the Liberty Twp. work site of his former employer and friend in August 2010 will serve 18 months to seven years in state prison for the crime.

Charles Beard Easton, 56, of Binghamton,N.Y., was sentenced Thursday in Susquehanna County Court on one felony criminal mischief count.

Eastonintentionally caused a fire at a James Willsley Construction site Aug. 9, 2010. Willsey, who is now deceased, helped Easton following his release from prison on robbery charges the year before the fire.

Initially, Easton had been charged with arson. But in a plea agreement, admitted to the felony criminal mischief count.

Willsley’s daughter took the stand at the hearing. “You set out to destroy a house; you almost destroyed my father,” she said to Easton.

She told the court her father considered Easton a friend and thought he deserved a second chance.

She also said the loss in the fire also hurt her father’s business. “We did not profit from the job at all,” she told the court.

District Attorney Jason Legg reminded the court Easton had been released from prison only one year prior to the incident. “That speaks to his inability to be rehabilitated,” Legg said as he asked the judge to level the maximum seven year sentence.

Prior to issuing the sentence, President Judge Kenneth Seamans said, “This was an intentional fire. (Willsley) tried to help you out; tried to assist you. You helped destroy him in some fashion.”

Easton was also ordered to pay over $18,500 in restitution for the losses Willsley’s business sustained from the fire.

Others sentenced July 19 in the Susquehanna County Court of Common Pleas were:

Lisa Kimberly Sydlosky, 39, ofHarpursville,N.Y.to 6 months probation for Driving Under the Influence in Montrose on Feb. 4.  She also received a $200 fine for Reckless Driving in Montrose on Feb. 4; and 12 months probation to run consecutive for Disorderly Conduct in Montrose on Feb. 4.

Ryan Richard Smith, 33, Uniondale, to 30 days to 6 months for Driving Under the Influence in Forest City on Dec. 23, 2011.

Lonny Lee Hurst Jr., 32, of Mansfield, to 90 days to two years minus one day for Driving Under the Influence in Bridgewater Twp. on Oct. 22, 2011.

Cody Allen Brown, 22, Meshoppen, to two years probation for Criminal Conspiracy/Criminal Trespass in Auburn Twp. on Jan. 1.

Alexander W Scott, 49, of Kingsley, to nine months probation for Misapplication of Entrusted Property in Brooklyn Twp. on Feb. 16, 2011.

Stacie Michele Congdon-Wilder, 36, of Windsor, N.Y., to two years minus one day probation for Theft by Unlawful Taking in New Milford Twp. on April 29.

Donald Timothy Goble, 37, of Lawton, to two to six months for Driving Under the Influence in Bridgewater Twp. on Dec. 9, 2011. Goble also received three to 23-1/2 months, to run concurrent with the above sentence for Accident Involving Death or Personal Injury While Not Properly Licensed in Bridgewater Twp. on Dec. 9, 2011.