Man given 3 life sentences for starting fire that killed his kids
Armin Wand III is sentenced to three life sentences in prison without eligibility for parole for starting a fire last September that killed his three children, ages 3, 5 and 7, as well as his unborn child.
Wand was also sentenced by Lafayette County Judge Thomas J. Vale to 40 years in prison and 20 years on supervision for the attempted homicide of Sharon Wand Wednesday in Lafayette County Court. He was also given the maximum sentence of 25 years in prison and 15 years of extended supervision each for arson and felony murder.
His wife, Sharon Wand, and their 2-year-old daughter survived the fire.
Armin Wand declined to speak at his sentencing.
Wand pleaded guilty to three counts of first-degree intentional homicide, one count of first-degree attempted homicide, one felony murder through arson of a building and one count of arson of a building. Prosecutors dropped two counts of attempted first-degree intentional homicide.
Sharon Wand was pregnant at the time of the fire. The charge of felony murder was for the death of her unborn child.
Sharon Wand was in the courtroom during Wednesday's sentencing. A statement was read on her behalf, including a recounting of the life of her three children. The statement describes abuse, verbal and physical violence at the hand of Armin Wand.
Sharon's statement said that she named her unborn child Dorothy Marie. She said her daughter has not yet realized that her brothers are gone forever. To Armin, the statement read, "I will not let you beat me."
"You killed innocent children who loved and trusted you," the statement read. "You have done the worst thing you can do to a mother; take her children."
"You got what you want. You're famous. You're Armin Wand who killed his children."
Assistant District Attorney Roy Korte said Armin was unhappy that Sharon was pregnant and threatened to kill her and the unborn baby.
Korte said Wand's personal issues, individually or combined, did not give him reason to do what he did. He said Wand still hasn't shown remorse.
Armin Wand's defense said any sentence will be long enough because Wand will be a senior citizen when and if he's ever released. The defense said Wand lacks the ability to plan and think abstractly in day-to-day life.
Two attempted homicide charges were dismissed as part of Armin's plea deal. As part of the deal, Armin will testify against his brother, Jeremy Wand.
Prosecutors said Jeremy Wand, Armin's brother, conspired with his Armin Wand on setting the fatal fire for the promise of $300.
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