Antun Lewis sentenced to 35 years for setting Cleveland's deadliest house fire set

Gets five years supervised release


Antun Lewis, twice found guilty of setting a fire that killed a mother and eight children attending a 14th birthday sleepover in 2005, has been sentenced to 35 years in prison with five years of supervised release.

Lewis maintained his innocence Friday, claiming someone else set the fire. 

But family members of the victims who died in the fire are calling the sentence "a total injustice."

"It makes you wonder sometimes about the justice system," said Rosalind Golden, the grandmother of one of the children. "You can go to jail for life for selling drugs and you can take nine lives and do 40 years. I don't understand."

Another grandmother of four of the children told Lewis she wanted him locked up "forever and 100,000 years."

Fakih Jones, age 7; Malee’ya Williams, age 12; Shauntavia Mitchell, age 12; Earnest Tate, Jr., age 13; Miles Golden Cockfield, age 13; Antwon Jackson, Jr., age 14; Moses Williams Jr., age 14; Devonte Carter, age 15, and Medeia Carter, 33, were killed in the fire.

Lewis was convicted last December in federal court on one count of arson.


The man now convicted twice of setting Cleveland's deadliest fire is scheduled to be sentenced today in federal court.

Antun Lewis was found guilty Friday in a re-trial of charges stemming from the deadliest fire in Cleveland's history.

STORY: Matriarch of family killed by Antun Lewis in Cleveland's deadliest fire pleads for closure

33-year-old Medeia Carter, four of her children and four other children attending a 14th-birthday sleepover died in the 2005 fire that Antun Lewis has now been convicted twice of setting intentionally.

Lewis faces life in prison.

Authorities say Lewis was upset over a drug debt and dumped gasoline to set what became Cleveland's deadliest house fire.

Lewis has always maintained his innocence. He knew some of the victims and says he would never harm a child.

Federal judge Solomon Oliver, Jr. granted the retrial in February 2012  because he said that the conviction was based on unreliable witnesses.

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