Casino Arsonist Faces Years in Prison for Deaths of 30 Horses

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Posted on: February 2, 2024, 02:58h. 

Last updated on: February 2, 2024, 02:58h.

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A man pled blameworthy this week for mounting a barn occurrence astatine Tioga Downs Casino Resort successful New York State. The horrific blaze killed 30 horses.

Tioga Downs Casino Resort blazeTioga Downs Casino Resort blaze, pictured above. Thirty horses died successful nan November fire. (Image: Spectrum News/David Dobrzensky)

Boyd H. Fenton, 33, of Athens, Pa., connected Monday pleaded blameworthy to third-degree arson, second-degree assault, and 30 counts of animal cruelty.

The November 9 occurrence successful Nichols, N.Y., besides killed a feline and injured a trainer pinch second-degree burns.

None of nan horses survived. Terrified animals were seen kicking and screaming arsenic nan flames spread, according to The New York Times.

When Fenton is sentenced connected April 19, Tioga County District Attorney Kirk Martin wants him to get nan maximum penalty, according to Lancaster Farming, a location workplace news outlet.

The condemnation for arson runs betwixt 5 and 15 years. Assault leads to 7 years down bars, followed by 3 years of supervision. Animal cruelty convictions lead to 15 months to 4 years successful prison.

Fenton’s sentences person to beryllium served concurrently nether New York authorities law, Martin said.

The sentence, moreover though it’s nan maximum we could offer, still isn’t enough,” Martin added. “But we did nan champion we could.”

Martin said authorities were unsure of Fenton’s motive, but nan charismatic revealed that Fenton had taken narcotics earlier nan incident.

“He thought group were chasing him,” Martin told Lancaster Farming.

Fenton is presently successful custody successful nan Tioga County jailhouse awaiting his sentencing.

Recollections of Blaze

The injured trainer, identified arsenic Edgar Clarke, 68, had grabbed a occurrence extinguisher aft spotting nan flames, but nan occurrence was excessively extensive.

“I couldn’t get successful nan barn,” Clarke told The Times. “It was wholly engulfed.”

Clarke suffered second-degree burns connected his face.

Kayla Morris mislaid 12 horses successful nan blaze, each of which she either trained aliases owned.

I tried to get successful nan barn, but I conscionable couldn’t because nan occurrence was conscionable truthful basking and I conscionable screamed and screamed,” she recalled successful an question and reply pinch The Times. “I sat for 4 hours and watched it pain and conscionable hoped — hoped — that 1 of them would travel out.”

Among nan horses who died was Better Call Saul, an 11-year-old. Owned by Lee Morris, he had 24 profession trips to nan winner’s circle pinch net of $267,202.

“He was nan absolute emotion of my life,” Kayla Morris told Harnesslink, a horse-focused publication. “He was cheeky, funny, and ever hungry. He conscionable wanted to beryllium loved.”

Donations Raised

Fundraisers were established pursuing nan deadly blaze.

Jeff Gural, proprietor of Tioga Downs and president of American Racing and Entertainment, matched $100K successful donations. In total, respective 100 1000 dollars were raised for nan impacted horsemen and trainers.

Tioga Downs Casino Resort is located adjacent nan New York State-Pennsylvania border. It provides casino gaming featuring 890 slot machines and harness racing. Many of nan horses that perished successful nan blaze were utilized for harness races.

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