SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – A man who admitted to arson and murder in Lackawanna County learned his punishment on Thursday.
Diomedes Ceballos has been in prison for three and a-half years and he won’t be getting out anytime soon. The 61-year-old was sentenced on arson and murder charges Thursday.
Ceballos admitted conspiring with his brother to burn down his own home in an insurance scam, only to have his brother suffer fatal burns.
“I don’t think it’s anything that they contemplated. I don’t think for a minute, if he really recognized the danger to his brother that they would have gone forward,” Defense Attorney Bill Thompson said.
Police believe Aurelio Ceballos DeLeon, 57, poured gasoline inside the home on 12th Avenue in West Scranton but was burned when he set the fire and got some of the fuel on his clothes. He was later found dead in his apartment.
A city firefighter seriously hurt his arm putting out the flames. In court, he described the fire as a giant blow torch. He still hasn’t gotten full mobility back.
“I had torn a part of my forearm so they had to reattach that surgically in the course of doing my duties. It took a couple months to get back to work,” Rick Rondomanski, the injured firefighter, said.
Ceballos was sentenced to 10 to 20 years in prison. When he’s released, Ceballos will also have to spend 20 years on probation.