(NEW ALBANY) - The teenager who admitted to starting a fire in New Albany that killed three children and badly injured a fourth was given the maximum sentence Monday morning.
Judge Susan Orth sentenced 19-year-old Cody Cashion to 65 years for count 1 of murder, 65 years for count 2 of murder, 65 years for count 3 of murder and 50 years for an arson charge. The sentences will run concurrently. He will also get credit for time served.
Cashion will be eligible for parole in August 2046 when he is 51 years old.
Cashion pleaded guilty last month to three counts of murder and arson causing serious bodily injury.
"I ask that you impose the maximum sentence because we have been given a maximum sentence. We are here to get justice," said the victims' grandmother, Marie Hughes Clark.
Cashion told police he shot a flare gun into a home on Ealy Street in January, sparking a house fire that killed three children -- Taizah, Tyrese and Trinity Hughes -- and badly injured their sister -- Tatyana Hughes.
"I have no excuse for what I did. There's no way I can change it. I am sorry. I wish I could change it. I'm sorry," Cashion said in court on Monday.
While Cashion's age was a mitigating circumstance in the case, Orth determined his lengthy criminal record, which began when Cashion was 12, coupled with the severity of the crime, was enough to give him the maximum sentence.
"This does not bring back the lives of these children; however, this defendant will be held accountable for his senseless act of violence. We will continue to pursue the case against the final defendant, Kylie Jenks," said prosecutor Keith Henderson.
"(It is) such a relief. (I'm) so thankful my grandbabies got justice today," Clark said.
The only survivor, Tatyana Hughes, celebrated her sixth birthday over the weekend.
She has been at almost every hearing in the case, but was at school Monday morning as Cashion was sentenced.
Her family said they didn't want to take away from the happiness she's experienced over the weekend.
After the hearing, the victims' and Cashion's family members clashed outside the courtroom and sheriff's deputies had to break it up.
Shelby Makowsky received a 20-year sentence for her part in the crime.
Jenks, who drove the car, faces six to 20 years behind bars when she is sentenced next month.
A 17-year-old girl who was also charged in the case was sentenced to a girls' school for her part in the deaths of the children.
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