Safyre Terry’s mother sentenced to 11 years for lying about 2013 Hulett Street arson

Jennica Duell

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Jennica Duell’s attorney says Duell was not at the arson fire that morning after Duell initially said she was.

They say Edward Leon is responsible.

The U.S. Attorney says his investigation isn’t over and he will prosecute those responsible.

“She’s no kind of mother, mothers in the wild, animals protect their children better than she ever did,” Aunt of Safyre Terry Liz Dolder said.

Dolder was overcome with emotion watching Jennica Duell receive 11 years and three months in prison on Monday after a federal court judge declared Duell’s actions inexcusable.

Duell was convicted on perjury charges for lying about her whereabouts and things that happened involving the 2013 Hulett Street arson fire that killed three of her children and their father and badly injuring her daughter Safyre Terry.

Video played in court showed Duell telling investigators that she was at her home with Robert Butler when he set the house on fire. Butler was later released from jail when Duell admitted she lied.hulett-st

Duell’s Attorney Cheryl Coleman asked the judge to take into account Duell’s drug abuse and mental health history, saying since she was a little girl Duell was abused by her stepfather and abandoned by her mother.

“Hearing her being played as a victim is just disgusting. It was appalling to hear that but I do hope that she will get the help that she needs,” Dolder said.

RELATED: Family of man sentenced in connection with the fatal 2013 arson speaks to NEWS10

Coleman says evidence proves Edward Leon set the fire. In March, Leon was sentenced to ten years in prison for lying about his whereabouts the morning of the fire.

“He acknowledged it ultimately. We all know he was there and we all know that Jennica wasn’t,” Coleman said.

U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of New York Richard Hartunian says he’s not giving up on justice.

“There’s substantial evidence of involvement on the part of Mr. Leon, on the part of Jennica Duell and others and we’re continuing to look at all possibilities.”

“I don’t know if we’ll ever get the truth. I pray every day,” Dolder said.

Dolder also said today that Safyre Terry is doing very well despite all of this, as some of you may have seen we had her in our studio just a short time ago.

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