Hike sentence

Brockton arsonist serving a life sentence has been denied parole

BROCKTON — A woman who killed a young mother and injured several others after burning down a multi-family home in Brockton in 2006 has been denied parole.

According to the written decision of the parole board, Chiteara Thomas was 22 when she took a cigarette lighter from a curtain on the first floor of a three-storey building on Montello Street in Brockton in the early morning of July 6, 2006 .

The blaze killed a 28-year-old mother of four and injured some of the building’s 13 residents, forcing those on the second floor to throw their three children out the window before jumping themselves.

Olinda Calderon’s youngest child was just one month old when Calderon died from injuries sustained in the fire, according to the council document. The infant survived.

Following her second-degree murder conviction, Thomas was sentenced to life in prison, although she was given the option of parole after a second jury trial in 2016.

Now 37, Thomas told the state parole board she was making a “complete turnaround” in her behavior, after her initial adjustment in prison was described in court documents. commission as “very problematic”, involving several physical altercations.

She described being in an abusive relationship at the time of the fire and using several substances on a daily basis, including alcohol, marijuana, crack, and sometimes Klonopin.

According to the board’s written decision, Thomas said she had no intention of hurting or killing anyone, but had a fight with the first-floor resident and passed out for a while. much of the incident.

After staying sober throughout her incarceration, Thomas earned a GED in 2009 and is currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree at Boston University, the document says.

But earlier this month the parole board decided not to grant Thomas parole, citing the belief that she “needs a longer period of positive adjustment”.

“Chiteara Thomas has not demonstrated a level of rehabilitative progress that would make her release compatible with the welfare of society,” the board said in its March 9 decision.

Thomas will return to the board for another review in July 2023.

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