Modified: December 27, 2016 2:33pm
Acting Erie County District Attorney Michael J. Flaherty, Jr. announces that 41-year-old Al-Shariyfa Robinson of Buffalo has been sentenced 15 years to life by State Supreme Court Justice Penny M. Wolfgang for starting a fire that killed two people.
In December, a jury convicted Robinson of two counts of Murder in the 2nd Degree and one count of Arson in the 2nd Degree.
After hearing the evidence, the jury found that on October 10, 2015, Al-Shariyfa Robinson set fire to a rooming house located at 392 Curtiss Street in Buffalo where her former boyfriend lived. The fire caused the death of 64-year old James Hodges and 58-year old Edward Hughes.
Acting DA Flaherty offers his sympathies and condolences to the victim’s families and praises the thorough and professional investigation conducted by the Buffalo Fire Marshals.
Buffalo Fire Marshals Sean McKinnie, Paul Simonian, Edward Hughes (no relation to the victim) and Buffalo Police Homicide Detective Louis Cardona put in countless hours on the case.
“The house quickly filled with toxic smoke and the two victims did not have a chance to escape,” says acting DA Flaherty. “Although we mourn the loss of the lives of Mr. Hughes and Mr. Hodges, we are all fortunate this was not a greater tragedy. Ten other residents were able to flee the burning home in the dead of night. None of the residents could ever have imagined that the defendant would start their home on fire while they were sleeping.”
Paul J. Glascott, Chief of the Felony Trial Bureau and Assistant District Attorney Cathleen M. Roemer prosecuted the case.