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Family members of murder victims speak out following life sentence for De St. Croix

(WABI)
Published: Jan. 14, 2020 at 3:33 PM EST
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Family members of two people murdered in Bangor shared their heartbreak and angry Tuesday as the man who killed them was sentenced to life in prison.

Nearly two years ago, 27-year-old John De St. Croix set fire to a delivery truck the victims were sleeping - then watched it burn.

TV5 was in the courtroom where De St. Croix learned his fate for the crime.

"It was a significant part of the trial," said Assistant Attorney General Leane Zainea. "It's not often that we have video of what takes place during a murder and that certainly captured it."

That video from March of 2018 shows John De St. Croix watching as the fire he set burned - eventually killing Michael Bridges and Desiree York.

"Just think that somebody could sit there and watch that it takes a heartless cold individual to do something like that," said Torie York, Desiree's sister - addressing the court.

"I just don't understand how somebody could sit there and watch somebody burn, I really don't understand," said Desiree's brother Donald York Jr.

At one point during the victim impact statements emotions boiled over and York's father rushed toward his daughters killer.

He was restrained and a brief recess was called.

When court resumed, the sentence from the judge...

"I do find that the this substantially exceeds the degree of viciousness inherent in the crime of murder," said Justice Ann Murray. "So, I do think that life is the appropriate base sentence."

"Our client actually expected that," said defense attorney Jeff Toothaker. "We thought she would focus on two people dying. She focused on premeditation and cruelty. He wants to appeal so we'll get that going and see where it goes."

"It certainly was callous and cold for him to stand there knowing he had set the fire, hearing his friends beg for their lives and do nothing," said Zainea.

Following the sentence we spoke with members of the victims families. They said they felt justice was served and now they can start to move forward.

"We feel satisfied," said Torie York. "It doesn't bring her back. It doesn't make it right but at least we got justice."

"I finally got some peace," said Mark Bridges, Michael's brother. "Justice for both of them."

"She knows what's going on and she can rest in peace now," said Desiree's mother Brenda York. "That gives me peace for her to do that. I just know it. So, I'm very happy with it."

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