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California

Corrections officer faces prison after no contest arson plea

A California prison guard faces prison himself after pleading no contest to arson.

The Sacramento County district attorney’s office said Friday that William Joseph Babbitt entered the no-contest pleas Thursday to the arson of an inhabited building, possessing flammable material and misdemeanor domestic violence.

Prosecutors say Babbitt set fire to his victim’s front door using an accelerant in August 2016 because he suspected the victim had dated his estranged wife.

The victim was sleeping, but a neighbor saw the fire, warned the victim and doused the flames.

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Babbitt later threw his wife to the ground, scraping her arm, when she confronted him about the incident.

Prosecutors say he faces three years in prison when he is sentenced next month.


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