Friday, July 10, 2009

Burnt out

The Judge decided to give the deferred adjudication probation sentences.

Understandable due to their age and lack of criminal history. I sincerely hope they take advantage of the opportunity the judge gave them to straighten out their lives.

No jail time for teen arsonists

- The Herald-Zeitung

Two teenagers stood in court Thursday after igniting downtown New Braunfels a year ago to the day.

Emilia Zoe Spencer, 18, and Jordan Scott Schaefer, 19, pleaded guilty Thursday to five counts of arson of a vehicle in the 274th District Court of Judge Gary Steel.

Spencer and Schaefer set ablaze five vehicles throughout downtown New Braunfels and lit fires in two trash containers on July 10, 2008.

The fires claimed more than $60,000 in damages, then-interim fire chief John Robinson told the Herald-Zeitung.

Steel gave Spencer deferred adjudication, a $5,000 fine and 240 hours of community service. She must also complete an in-jail day treatment program. The 45-day program is designed to deter destructive behavior and the use of drugs and alcohol, Comal County Assistant District Attorney Steve De Lemos said.

Deferred adjudication means she will be supervised, but the court did not enter a verdict. If she violates any of the court orders or commits any crimes, she could enter probation or receive jail time, De Lemos said.

“The judge felt like since Spencer didn’t have any criminal history or background, deferred adjudication was the right way to go,” he said.

Schaefer must serve 10 years of probation, pay a $5,000 fine, serve 240 hours community service and complete the same in-jail day treatment program.

De Lemos said between the two, they will pay restitution of about $12,500 to the victims.

Another teen, Cody McNabb, also was arrested in connection with the vehicle arsons. According to court records, he entered a plea of guilty for at least one count of arson of a vehicle Thursday. His punishment hearing is not set.

Arson of a vehicle, a second degree felony, is punishable by two to 20 years in jail and up to a $10,000 fine.