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Brocton Church Arsonist Sentenced

MAYVILLE – Daniel Frey, the 33-year-old arsonist who burned down the historic Tri Parish Church in Brocton in 2013, was sentenced to four to eight years in state prison for the act.

Acting Chautauqua County District Attorney Patrick Swanson’s office made the announcement Monday that Frey was sentenced by Judge Paul Wojtaszek to the indeterminate sentence after being convicted of third-degree arson.

With an indeterminate prison sentence, the convicted offender will serve the minimum term – for Frey, that’s four years – but the release date is uncertain. His case will be reviewed by the state parole board, the members of which will decide when Frey is eligible for parole. Indeterminate sentences are often used for crimes of a more serious nature.

Frey was arrested in March 2015, after a lengthy investigation by the county fire investigation team and the sheriff’s office criminal division.

The church had been built in 1903, and was home to Brocton’s Salem Lutheran, Brocton’s Methodist and Portland’s Methodist churches, which consolidated in the 1980s. The fire rendered the church a total loss.

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