DOJ Seal

Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Northern District of New York

For Immediate Release

Monday, July 9, 2018
Grant C. Jaquith
, United States Attorney
Contact: Richard Southwick

Schenectady Man Sentenced to 63 Months of Imprisonment for Arson

Duane E. Griffin Set the Fire that Destroyed the Three-Story Building Located at 605 Union Street, Schenectady

ALBANY, NEW YORK – Duane E. Griffin, 37, of Schenectady, New York, was sentenced to serve 63 months in prison for arson, announced United States Attorney Grant C. Jaquith and Ashan M. Benedict, Special Agent in Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF)-New York Field Division.


On March 9, 2018, following a one-week trial, a jury voted to convict Griffin of arson. The evidence presented at trial established that on March 17, 2012, Griffin used a hand-held propane torch to set the three-story building, located at 605 Union Street in the City of Schenectady, on fire.  Griffin then got into his vehicle and fled the scene as flames began to engulf the building.  The fire caused such severe structural damage to the building that it later had to be torn down for public safety. Griffin was also sentenced to a three-year term of supervised release, which will start after he is released from prison.  


This case was investigated by the United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and the Schenectady Fire Department, and was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Rick Belliss.


New York Field Division