A Carey man will to serve between three and five years in prison after entering a guilty plea earlier this month to a felony charge of arson.
Chad Ramsey, 44, set fire to a woman’s home in Bellevue in 2017, after violating a no-contact order roughly 109 times, according to court records and previous reporting by the Idaho Mountain Express.
Following the house fire, Ramsey fled to Utah, where he was ultimately charged with a slew of felony offenses and sentenced to prison.
Ramsey served his prison sentence in Utah between 2017 and 2020, after which he extradited to Idaho to face his felony charges in Blaine County.
According to court records, Ramsey initially faced an additional felony charge of stalking. Based on a plea agreement offered by the Blaine County Prosecutor’s Office, the stalking charge will be dismissed in exchange for the guilty plea to the arson charge.
During a change of plea hearing on Oct. 7, Ramsey’s attorney, Selim Star, failed to successfully argue for a reduced bond for his client in order to get him out of the Blaine County jail until his sentencing on Dec. 14. Given the seriousness of the offense, and Ramsey’s previous attempts to flee, Blaine County 5th District Judge Ned Williamson ultimately decided to leave Ramsey’s bail at $100,000, “which is not particularly high given the severity of the charge,” court records state.
Based on the plea agreement, the prosecutor’s office is recommending a sentence of six years minimum, with three years credit for time served in Utah. The maximum sentence proposed is eight years, with three years credited, for a total of five years.
It will ultimately be up to the judge to determine Ramsey’s sentence, and the defendant is open to argue for a lesser sentence. Prosecuting Attorney Matt Fredback told the court he would have a victim impact statement at the sentencing hearing and Ramsey’s defense attorney said he would have two witnesses to testify on behalf of his client.
The maximum punishment for arson in Idaho is 25 years.