TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - "That fact that he's not seeing daylight right now is good for me," is how Libbey Cheney, the sister of firefighter James Dickman, is reacting to the sentencing of Ray Abou Arab.
"We didn't have the outcome we were looking for but we did have an outcome. So because of that we will take what we were given and we will move forward and try at least to put it behind us."
Ms. Cheney said the families didn't want to go through a second trial after a mistrial was declared by Judge Stacy Cook.That's why they agreed to a plea deal finding Mr. Abou Arab guilty of involuntary manslaughter and aggravated arson for intentionally setting an apartment on fire that killed firefighters Jamie Dickman and Stephen Machcinski.
He's now behind bars for twenty years instead of life.
"We had a lot of input. They were looking to us to decide because ultimately they didn't want to put their people through it but they didn't want to put us through it as well."
Ms. Cheney and other members of the Dickman and Machcinski families want to thank everyone for the love and support they've received during their three year ordeal. That includes the police and fire departments, the prosecutors office and all Toledoans.
"The fact that we got something, we'll take it" adds Ms. Cheney.