Woman linked to firefighter deaths sent to prison

  • Associated Press
  • May 19, 2014 - 3:50 PM

ROCHESTER, N.Y. — A 25-year-old woman was sentenced to up to four years in prison Monday for lying on forms when she bought guns used by a man to kill two Rochester-area volunteer firefighters on Christmas Eve 2012.

Dawn Nguyen of the town of Greece drew the maximum term of 1 1/3 to four years in state prison when she was sentenced by state Supreme Court Justice Thomas Moran in Rochester. She still faces federal charges for illegally purchasing the firearms and selling them to a known felon. A hearing on motions in that case is scheduled for Wednesday.

Nguyen was convicted last month of falsifying business records when she bought a semi-automatic rifle and a 12-gauge shotgun at a Gander Mountain store in 2010 for her neighbor William Spengler Jr., who was prohibited from owning weapons because of his felony record.

Spengler was released in prison in 1996 after serving 17 years for killing his grandmother with a hammer.

Spengler set fire to his lakeside home on Lake Ontario in Webster in the pre-dawn hours of Dec. 24, 2012, and lay in ambush until firefighters arrived. He used the guns to shoot four firefighters before committing suicide.

Two firefighters, Michael Chiapperini and Tomasz Kaczowka, died and two others, Joseph Hofstetter and Ted Scardino, were wounded.

The remains of Spengler's sister, Cheryl, were found in the burned-out home. She had been shot in the head.

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