The Bath man accused of setting the Dike Newell elementary school on fire in June 2022 had his plea hearing delayed Wednesday.
Allan Thomas Vigil, 31, appeared in the West Bath District Court, where a 60-day continuance was approved by Superior Court Justice Daniel Billings, The Times Record reported.
The delay will allow for further negotiations on a plea deal, Assistant District Attorney Kent Murdick told The Times Record.
“It’s a pretty complicated case. There are a lot of moving parts,” Murdick stated. “We expect him to plead guilty.”
Vigil’s attorney, Jennifer Cohen, has proposed a 10-year prison sentence. Cohen maintains that Vigil has a history of developmental issues, mental illness and suffered years of neglect and abuse, according to News Center Maine.
He faces a maximum sentence of 35 years in prison for arson and burglary.
Vigil allegedly broke into the school the night of June 10 last year, and started a fire that rendered the school unusable. Students and teachers have since relocated to the former Bath Regional Career and Technical Center on High Street.
Vigil reportedly started the fire at Dike Newell by turning on the kitchen’s propane stove, and then igniting “lots of paper” from a supply closet with a lighter. He evacuated the building after the fire alarm went off, then confessed his crime to police.
Vigil also set several fires around Bath in July 2013, including at the Merrymeeting Center for Child Development. He received four years of probation and a 12-year suspended prison sentence in 2014.
Vigil is being held without bail at the Two Bridges Regional Jail in Wiscasset, according to The Times Record.
Vigil is due back in court on Sept. 27.