DC Arsonist Gets 25 Years

Admits to setting fires that hurt seven firefighters

By Darcy Spencer and Tonya LaFleur
|  Wednesday, Mar 14, 2012  |  Updated 3:03 PM EDT
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The man who admitted to setting a series of fires in D.C. -- including one that seriously injured four firefighters -- seemed to want to set up unusual fire rescue scenarios. News4's Darcy Spencer reports.

Darcy Spencer

The man who admitted to setting a series of fires in D.C. -- including one that seriously injured four firefighters -- seemed to want to set up unusual fire rescue scenarios. News4's Darcy Spencer reports.

A serial arsonist who admitted setting a fire that injured D.C. four firefighters was sentenced to 25 years in prison Tuesday.

A judge ordered Maurice Dews, 27, to get counseling in mental health, substance abuse and anger management.

The serial arsonist told the court on Tuesday, "I take full responsibility for it. I'm trying to get myself together and get the help I need."

Dews admits to setting eight other fires in the District and Prince George's County over the last three-and-a-half years.

D.C. firefighters became trapped when a roof collapsed on a home set fire by Dews last April in northeast Washington.

Dews set the fires so he could help people escape from the fires.

Two firefighters gave impact statements at Dews's sentencing in court.

"Just because he called 911 after he lit the fire doesn't mean he's remorseful to me," D.C. firefighter Chuck Ryan said.

All of the firefighters hurt in the April 2011 fire told News4 they never even dreamed of quitting because of the experience.

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