The woman accused of setting the fire that killed a 10-year-old girl was indicted this morning on a charge of first-degree murder.
Sarah R. Moore, 25, of Fourth Avenue, was also arraigned just before noon in front of Schenectady County Cour Judge Karen Drago.
Moore pleaded innocent.
Moore is accused of setting the June 13 fire that killed 10-year-old Avion Bell.
Authorities have alleged Moore set the fire in an effort to retaliate against Bell’s mother for a perceived slight. Moore was with Tamira Bell, Avion’s mother, and others the previous evening.
The fire broke out at about 4:30 a.m. that morning on the second floor of the apartment building. Fire Department Capt. Doug Faulisi, Lt. Robert Grzeskowiak and firefighter Darren VanNatten rescued Avion Bell, who was a fourth-grade student at Franklin D. Roosevelt Elementary School.
Avion was resuscitated at the scene and transported to Ellis Hospital. She was later airlifted to the Westchester County Medical Center. She never regained consciousness and died on June 17.
This morning’s indictment includes one count of first-degree murder and multiple counts of second-degree murder, each alleging different theories in Avion Bell’s death.
Schenectady County District Attorney Robert Carney said after Moore’s arrest that he did not believe that Moore intended to take Avion’s life, but the murder charge was brought because Moore was aware that Avion was in the residence when she allegedly committed the arson.
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