A Georgia man has been sentenced to 20 years in prison after a jury convicted him of setting fire to a woman’s bedroom and car after she refused his advances.
Jerel Jay Wilson, 29, of Union City, was found guilty Monday on all counts of arson in the first degree, arson in the second degree, and simple battery.
The charges stem from two seperate attacks that took place in the fall of 2018, prosecutors said. On September 11, 2018, Wilson broke into the woman’s apartment, burned her bedroom, followed her and physically attacked her after she spurned his advances. Several weeks later, he attacked the woman again in a hotel parking lot, setting fire to her car.
“In 2018, jealousy and rejection left a path of destruction,” said Assistant District Attorney Jared Horowitz. “I appreciate the jurors for their service during a pandemic and for delivering justice to this woman, who was tormented by this defendant. This verdict sends a message that this kind of dangerous behavior will not be tolerated in Cobb County. This verdict also would not have been possible without the thorough investigation done by the Smyrna Fire Marshals.”
A superior court judge on Friday sentenced Wilson, citing his “lack of concern and insight for his conduct.” In addition to 20 years behind bars, Wilson will have to serve 10 years on probation and follow a permanent protective order prohibiting him from having any contact with the victim.
20 years doesn’t seem nearly long enough.