A Cedarhurst man who pleaded guilty to setting his apartment on fire on the day he was to be evicted in January 2015 will serve up to eight years in prison for the arson that destroyed his unit and caused significant water damage to 56 other homes in the building.
Douglas Drummond, 54, was sentenced Tuesday by Court of Claims Judge Philip Grella in a Mineola courtroom more than three months after Drummond pleaded guilty to one count of second-degree arson, prosecutors said. The sentence also includes three years of post-supervision and stay away orders of protection for Drummond’s former roommates.
Drummond also must pay $2,004 in restitution as a civil judgment.
“This defendant recklessly endangered the lives of everyone who lived in that apartment building when he set eight separate fires that day,” said Nassau District Attorney Madeline Singas, in a statement announcing the sentence. “Drummond also jeopardized the lives of first responders who answered the call of duty and extinguished the fire before anyone was seriously injured.”
His attorney could not be reached for comment.
Prosecutors said Drummond had used tape to close the front door to the apartment and set fire to paper and clothes in his roommates’ rooms, curtains and a closet on Jan. 16, 2015. Drummond fled to a bathroom when the smoke and flames became overwhelming and called for help.
Firefighters from the Lawrence Cedarhurst Fire Department doused the fire and rescued Drummond.