Arson case

A map shows the location of Temple Israel of Hollywood. (Google Map / December 3, 2013)

A 23-year-old homeless man was sentenced Tuesday to nearly 10 years in prison for burglarizing and setting fire to a prominent Hollywood synagogue and other sites in 2011, although he may only serve closer to two years due to time already served.

Dmitriy Sheyko, a transient known to frequent the Hollywood area, had pleaded guilty to 22 charges related to burglary, arson and use of a destructive device.

In addition to his prison term, he'll have to pass a mental evaluation to avoid being transferred to an institution. Prosecutors said Sheyko had earlier been diagnosed with schizophrenia.

In court Tuesday, Sheyko's mother was visibily upset as the sentence was handed down as he looked back periodically and smiled at family members.

"This is not an easy decision for me; I have someone before me who is not a criminal, but that has done something that shows he can be a danger to society," Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Sam Ohta said, citing Sheyko's lack of prior criminal history.

Sheyko was arrested in 2011 as a suspect in a different burglary and was eventually linked to the burglary and arson at Temple Israel of Hollywood earlier in the year. Authorities say Sheyko placed several items, including a pine cone and animal skin, on a desk inside the synagogue and set them on fire. He also burned a couch inside the building.

Sheyko was also accused of burglarizing and using Molotov cocktails to set fire to several residences in the gated community of Beverly Ridge Terrace in Beverly Hills. He also set fire to a Ford F-250 pickup at a construction site in the neighborhood.

In all, authorities said Sheyko caused about $50,000 damage during his five-day crime spree.

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james.barragan@latimes.com

Twitter: @James_Barragan