Worcester

Man Admits to Starting Worcester Blaze That Led to Firefighter's Death

Christopher Roy, 36, a single father of a daughter who was 9 at the time, died in the Dec. 9, 2018, fire in a Worcester apartment building

A Massachusetts man charged with setting a blaze that led to the death of a firefighter in 2018 was sentenced Friday to up to 16 years in prison.

Momoh Kamara, 24, of West Boylston, was sentenced in Worcester Superior Court after pleading guilty to voluntary manslaughter, arson, armed burglary, and malicious destruction of a motor vehicle, according to the Worcester district attorney’s office.

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Christopher Roy, 36, a single father of a daughter who was 9 at the time, died in the Dec. 9, 2018, fire in a Worcester apartment building. He became trapped on the second floor of the six-unit building and was rescued by fellow firefighters but died at the hospital of smoke inhalation. No residents were injured.

Investigators have said that Kamara was a former tenant who used an accelerant to start the fire in the three-story building’s basement in a dispute with his former roommates. He had originally been charged with second-degree murder and was scheduled to go on trial later this month.

He was charged based in part on surveillance video that showed him walking on nearby streets at about the time of the early morning fire, as well evidence that showed that he took ride-hailing services to and from the area.

The malicious destruction charge stemmed from an episode that occurred before the fire.

“As a department we will continue to remember Chris for the ultimate sacrifice he made on Dec. 9, 2018, and honor his legacy by continuing to serve the community,” acting city fire Chief Martin Dyer said in a statement. “The Roy family will remain in our thoughts and prayers.”

Worcester District Attorney Joseph Early Jr. said he hoped that a conclusion to the case “provides a measure of justice and closure to Firefighter Roy’s family.”

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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