What’s a fire between friends?
For one Oakland Gardens man, it could mean some serious prison time.
Ezra Barashy, 26, pleaded guilty to third-degree arson Tuesday for setting fire to his friend’s Little Neck basement apartment this summer, according to the district attorney’s office. In his plea, he admitted to intentionally tossing a Molotov cocktail at the home of his pal.
Surveillance video shows Barashy approaching his friend’s residence on Aug. 22 with a gas can and running to a waiting car, the district attorney’s office said. Inside the car was his friend’s girlfriend. Barashy had known both of them for several years and allegedly drove the girlfriend to and from the crime scene shortly before 7 a.m.
Barashy’s friend woke up when the Molotov cocktail set his apartment door on fire. He put out the blaze with a pot of water.
The arson incident isn’t the first time that Barashy has been in trouble with the law, according to the district attorney’s office.
In 2009, he pleaded guilty to attempted criminal possession of a weapon in the second degree for shooting at the home of a Queens Supreme Court judge in October 2008. Barashy was sentenced to two years and six months in prison.
Barashy is scheduled to be sentenced on Feb. 10 for the arson plea. The judge indicated on Tuesday she would hand down a sentence of five to 10 years in prison.
“The defendant has pleaded guilty to having set a fire that could have been deadly, if not for the quick-thinking actions of the victim,” District Attorney Richard Brown said. “The defendant, who has already served time for firing shots at the home of a Queens Supreme Court judge, will be going back to prison and the public will be safe from his violent tendencies.”
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