17 years behind bars was the sentence for 26-year-old Casey Fury, after
having pleaded guilty to arson by setting a fire aboard the U.S. Navy
nuclear submarine USS
Miami. As O’Ryan Johnson reports for the Boston Herald, the fire caused
significant damage to the sub – $450 million worth – and put
it out of commission indefinitely.
You might find Fury’s reason for setting the fire somewhat surprising.
Apparently, Fury did it because he wanted to go home early from work.
Fury was a civilian painter from New Hampshire at work on the sub while
it was dry docked in a shipyard. Johnson reports that Fury spoke in court,
saying that he did not mean to disrespect the U.S. Navy, and did not mean
for anyone to get hurt (firefighters had a tough time battling the fire
and several were injured).
In Maryland, arson is generally a felony crime, and is often characterized
as a violent crime, with lengthy time behind bars if you’re convicted.
If you cause enough damage, like Fury did, the case will almost always
be charged as a felony. Maryland also has the “malicious burning”
charge, which is less serious than arson, but it only takes $1,000 or
more in damage to get charged with a first-degree felony.