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Exford Receives Maximum Sentence in Lewis County Court Friday on Murder and Arson Charges

 

Published: April 22, 2022 at 11:00 a.m.

By: Nick Altmire

 

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Lowville, NY- Shawn L. Exford was back in Lewis County Court this morning for sentencing, after a Lewis County jury returned guilty verdicts on March 17th on all 13 counts contained in an indictment against Exford following 8 days of trial testimony.

 

Exford is convicted of starting the fatal fire at 7525 South State Street in Lowville on the night of November 30, 2019, killing Catherine Crego and Saratina Kilbourne. Six individuals escaped the fire, with Exford convicted of six counts of first-degree reckless endangerment, in addition to the four counts of second-degree murder, two counts of first-degree arson and one count of second-degree arson.

 

Judge Daniel R. King imposed the following sentences on Friday morning:

 

Count 1: Arson (first-degree)- 25 years to life in State prison

 

Count 2: Arson (first-degree)- 25 years to life (concurrent to count 1)

 

Count 3: Murder (second-degree)- 25 years to life (concurrent to counts 1 and 2)

 

Count 4: Murder (second-degree)- 25 years to life (concurrent to count 1-3)

 

Count 5: Murder (second-degree)- 25 years to life (concurrent to counts 1-4)

 

Count 6: Murder (second-degree)- 25 years to life (concurrent to counts 1-5)

 

Count 7- Arson (second-degree)- 25 years in State prison/5 years post-release parole (concurrent to counts 1-6)

 

Count 8- Reckless Endangerment (first-degree)- 3 to 7 years in State prison (concurrent to counts 1-7)

 

Count 9- Reckless Endangerment (first-degree)- 3 to 7 years in State prison (concurrent to counts 1-8)

 

Count 10- Reckless Endangerment (first-degree)- 3 to 7 years in State prison (concurrent to counts 1-9)

 

Count 11- Reckless Endangerment (first-degree)- 3 to 7 years in State prison (concurrent to counts 1-10)

 

Count 12- Reckless Endangerment (first-degree)- 3 to 7 years in State prison (concurrent to counts 1-11)

 

Count 13- Reckless Endangerment (first-degree)- 3 to 7 years in State prison (concurrent to counts 1-12)

 

This was the harshest sentence available by law. In addition, Exford was ordered to pay a $5,000 fine (the maximum allowed) and $375 in court fees.

 

Prior to the sentencing, the court heard from two family members of victim Catherine Crego, in addition to a statement from survivor Brian Mushtare read by lead prosecutor on the case Caleb Petzoldt. Mr. Petzoldt and defense attorney John Hallett also made statements to the court, in addition to Exford. Judge King told Exford prior to reading the sentences that his failure to accept any responsibility for the night in question and failure to express any remorse factored into his decision on determining the length of the sentence.

 

Exford has 30-days to appeal his conviction.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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