Defendant Pleads Guilty to Setting Fire to U.S. Probation Office Building

April 14, 2009

Greenbelt, Maryland - Harry L. Easterday, age 28, of Hyattsville, Maryland, pleaded guilty today to setting fire to a building in which the U.S. Probation Office was located, announced United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein.

“Anyone who uses violence in an effort to disrupt federal law enforcement operations must be held accountable,” said U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein.

According to the plea agreement, on January 26, 2008 Easterday broke into a building located in Greenbelt and started a fire on the first floor. The fire was extinguished by the sprinkler system and only minor damage was incurred. The U.S. Probation Office was the sole tenant of the building. Easterday had been on probation, supervised by a U.S. Probation officer whose office was in the building.

Easterday faces a minimum sentence of five years and a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison for the arson. U.S. District Judge Peter J. Messitte has scheduled sentencing for June 17, 2009 at 9:30 a.m.

United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein thanked the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives for their investigative work. Mr. Rosenstein commended Assistant United States Attorney David I. Salem, who is prosecuting the case.



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