Maryland Police Chief Sentenced to Multiple Life Terms for String of Arson Attacks

A former police chief in Maryland was given numerous life terms on Tuesday for setting fire to the homes, garages, and automobiles of persons who, according to the prosecution, had wronged him.

According to the Howard County state’s attorney’s office, David M. Crawford, 71, a former chief of the Laurel Police Department, was given eight life sentences plus 75 years in prison by Judge Richard S. Bernhardt of the Howard County Circuit Court.

The punishment will keep Mr. Crawford off the streets for the rest of his life, according to state’s attorney Richard H. Gibson Jr. Several of the periods are to run concurrently.

He was a member of the police, according to Mr. Gibson. He ought to have been familiar with justice, compassion, and order. Instead, he behaved violently.

The Man Detained for Series of Arsons Spanning a Decade

In 2021, Mr. Crawford was detained in connection with a dozen arsons that occurred between 2011 and 2020 in six different counties.

In connection with four fires that were started in 2017 and 2018, a Howard County jury found Mr. Crawford guilty in March on eight charges of attempted first-degree murder, three counts of first-degree arson, and one act of malicious burning. The victims all survived.

According to Mr. Gibson, victims of the Howard County fires included Mr. Crawford’s chiropractor, his wife’s acquaintance from the Voices for Children foster care organization, and a third person he knew from a group for parents’ rights.

ABC News confirms the news on its official Twitter account:

According to The Baltimore Sun, Mr. Crawford had already admitted guilt to arson in Frederick County, where he received a 20-year jail term. In the counties of Montgomery and Prince George, cases against Mr. Crawford are still pending.

Prosecutors said that there were patterns to the different fires. On the security footage, the arsonist could be seen wearing a sweatshirt with a hood to conceal his face. He used a cloth-wrapped pole to pour gasoline from gallon containers. On occasion, a silver sedan was seen close to prime locations.

The police carried out a search warrant at Mr. Crawford’s house in January 2021. Authorities claim that after reviewing his internet search history, investigators discovered a “target list” on his phone that included the known victims.

Check out this sampling of recent news; all of these stories warrant more in-depth investigation:

Mr. Crawford has a long career in police enforcement. In Laurel, he served as police chief from 2006 until his resignation in 2010. Prior to that, he served as the chief of the Prince George’s County Police Department and as a major in the District Heights Police Department.

Robert C. Bonsib, the attorney for Mr. Crawford, stated on Tuesday that his client continued to assert his innocence and that an appeal will be shortly filed.

“This is a sad and unfortunate ending for a man who for decades had well served his community in law enforcement,” Mr. Bonsib said in an email.

If you’re looking for crime news from across the state or the country, go no farther than The California Examiner.

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