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Top court upholds 310-year sentence for arsonist who killed 6

Published: Thu, May 5, 2011 @ 12:03 a.m.


Michael A. Davis

310-year sentence upheld for arsonist who killed 6

By Peter H. Milliken



The Ohio Supreme Court has refused to hear the appeal of Michael A. Davis, letting stand his conviction and three-century-plus prison sentence for setting a house fire that killed six people on Youngstown’s East Side.

In announcing its dis- missal of the appeal Wednesday, the top court let stand the unanimous decision by a three-judge panel of the 7th District Court of Ap- peals upholding Davis’ aggravated-murder and aggravated-arson convictions and his 310-year prison term.

Killed in the early morning blaze Jan. 23, 2008, on Stewart Avenue were Carol Crawford, 46; her daughter, Jennifer Crawford, 23; and Jennifer’s children, Raniasha, 8, Jeannine, 5, Alisha, 3, and Brandon, 2. Five other people survived the fire.

Judge R. Scott Krichbaum of Mahoning County Common Pleas Court imposed the lengthy prison term after a jury convicted Davis, then 18, of Bennington Avenue, but spared him from the death penalty.

The 7th District appeals judges ruled that police properly warned Davis of his constitutional right to remain silent before he confessed twice to setting the fire and that Judge Krichbaum “did not act unreasonably, arbitrarily or unconscionably” in imposing the long prison term.

In his appeal, Davis argued unsuccessfully that his long prison term violated the Eighth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which prohibits cruel and unusual punishments.

Davis also argued unsuccessfully in his appeal that his convictions were “against the manifest weight of the evidence” and “inconsistent with the evidence and testimony presented at trial.”

“The main question at trial was whether appellant was the individual responsible for starting the fire. The manifest weight of the evidence proved that he was,” the 7th District judges ruled.


1k9girl2223(19 comments)posted 4 years, 12 months ago

It is very unfortunate that these people have died over someone in that household stealing Michael Davis's cell phone. I'm not saying that Michael isn't at fault, because he is defiantly. Also think that whoever in that household that stole his cell phone should of gave it back to him, and maybe no-one would of died.

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2mzfeefee(22 comments)posted 4 years, 12 months ago

Maybe no one would of died???So six people dead...4 of them children and thats all you can say? over a cell phone? Thats my definition of an animal. A monster..someone who would block a door and set fire to a house KNOWING that there were INNOCENT children in there...who knows what else a monster like that would do. He should be locked away from society for the rest of his life. If his property was stolen, he should have called the police. Nothing done to him could justify the devastation he has caused so many people. He is a sociopath and beyond any rehabilitation. Only God can save him at this point.

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3Lifes2Short(3882 comments)posted 4 years, 12 months ago

A animal that needs to be put to death. Useless waste of human flesh.

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4k9girl2223(19 comments)posted 4 years, 12 months ago

mzfeefee you missed the whole point!! Like I said I don't agree at all that what he did was right!! I was just simply saying that it all could have been avoided PERIOD!! I understand that there were innocent people in there that didn't need to lose there life over this. Also, there is no excuse for not giving someone there cell phone back. Like they couldn't tell Michael had issues, and that there were problems with him before. Wake up!! You don't keep taunting someone that already has issues!!

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5whitesabbath(738 comments)posted 4 years, 12 months ago

re:k9girl , Wow bite the guys head off, sounds like you and Davis are alot alike, both of you have some serious issues...get help fast......

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6k9girl2223(19 comments)posted 4 years, 12 months ago

I don't have any issues white sabbath, furthermore I have never been in any trouble, never spent time in jail or prison, I own my own business, so actually I'm not anything like Michael Davis. I was just simply stating my opinion which the last time I checked I was allowed to. I also don't think I bit anyone's head off either. Thank you for your concern!!

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7whitesabbath(738 comments)posted 4 years, 12 months ago

re: k9 Jim Jones had his own business too, did that make him above all ? Not and your welcome for my concern, if you cant afford a phychologist maybe a self-help group would be better. Best of luck

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8mzfeefee(22 comments)posted 4 years, 11 months ago

I didn't miss your point...you missed mine. The ones actually most harmed by Davis' acts were innocent of any wrongdoing at all. His issues neither negate what he did or provide mitigating factors as to why he should receive leniency...you seem to believe that even though he was wrong...it was not "really" his fault. I say to that BullSh*t! Something is fundamentally broken inside of him that he could callously set a house on fire with those people inside over an allegedly stolen cell phone. Well lets see alleged stolen cell phone vs 6 innocent people dead (actual intent was that ALL of the people inside die...I think original count was 11). If you think that there is ANY reasoning that excuses or explains Davis' actions, then like whitesabbath said, there is something wrong with YOU!

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