John Notthink Case:
John Notthink was on duty in the emergency room of Anycity Hospital at around 2:00 am when the fire alarm sounded. He proceeded to identify the source of the fire where several canvas litters were stacked in an upright position under stairwell. Together with other hospital personnel, Notthink extinguished the fire before the arrival of the firefighters. According to the findings of police investigation, a fire from one of the litters caused a burning of the paint on the opposite wall under the stairwell and a large board attached to the wall with heavy bolts where the litters were attached. The fire contributed to the spread of a smoky haze in the entire hospital to an extent that some patients were evacuated from their wards. The smoke contributed to the death of one elderly patient and initial questioning of Notthink who denied any knowledge of the origin of the fire. Following his admission of responsibility for the fire and executing a sworn statement, there are several issues and considerations surrounding Notthink's case.
Degrees of Arson and Murder and their Penalties:
Arson is a crime that applies to persons accused of setting or causing fires or explosions to damage a property. The most severe arson charge is A-1 Felony, which is as serious as a murder charge, while a minor arson is simply a misdemeanor ("Arson", n.d.). In New York State, arson cases are usually dealt with by specialized officers who investigate them. Arrests in these cases