USS Miami Accused Arsonist Seeks Legal 'Potential Resolution'

Navy Times
Thursday, August 16, 2012

Attorney for a Maine shipyard worker accused of setting a fire that caused $400 million in damage seeks to avoid grand jury indictment.

Prosecutors say Casey James Fury, 24, of Portsmouth, N.H., confessed to setting a fire in May that damaged the Miami at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard. They say he also confessed to setting a second fire in June near the submarine.

In federal court documents filed this week, a judge granted a motion by Fury’s lawyer to extend the timetable for prosecutors to seek a federal indictment of Fury. The date is now Sept. 26. Public defender David Beneman said the time was needed to allow experts to review the case.

“Defense and government counsel have been meeting to discuss this case with an eye toward potential resolution without the need for a grand jury indictment,” Beneman said in his motion. “The magnitude of the fire damage, the volume of investigatory evidence, and the forensic arson evidence in this matter are voluminous, technical, and will consume large amounts of time and resources to consolidate, produce and review.”

He added that foregoing a grand jury indictment “will save substantial national resources extending beyond just court resources.”

Fury, a painter and sand blaster, told Navy investigators that he set the fires to get out of work because he was suffering from anxiety and having problems with his ex-girlfriend.

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