(AP) – Fifty-two-year-old Kenneth Knox was sentenced yesterday in Kennebec County Superior Court following a non-jury trial before Justice Nancy Mills. Knox was also found guilty of criminal threatening and aggravated cruelty to animals.
Sentencing is pending, but Knox could face up to 70 years behind bars. He has been held at the Riverview Psychiatric Center in Augusta.
The charges stem from a series of incidents on Christmas in the house Knox shared with his sister and brother-in-law, Timothy Barrett. Knox was cleaning his chain saw inside the house and Barrett asked him to take it outside.
Police said Knox was upset, grabbed a gasoline can and poured the contents on a computer and on his brother-in-law and sister before dumping it on a wood-burning stove, which erupted in flames.
Knox’s sister was burned in the fire, and three cats and a dog died.