Man sentenced to 40 years for setting Jasper house fire that killed his grandmother

Man sentenced to 40 years for setting Jasper house fire that killed his grandmother
Cedric McGill Jr.

JASPER, Texas (KTRE) - A Beaumont man who pleaded guilty to charges of murder and arson earlier this year in connection with the 2018 death of his grandmother, who died because of injuries she suffered in a house fire he allegedly set, was sentenced to 40 years in prison.

According to the Jasper County District Clerk’s Office, Cedric Ramon McGill II appeared in Judge Craig Mixson’s 1st Judicial District Court for a plea hearing on Feb. 13.

As part of a plea agreement, McGill pleaded guilty to charges of first-degree felony murder and first-degree felony arson. He agreed to a 40-year sentence for each charge, and he will serve the sentences concurrently, or at the same time.

McGill was indicted on a capital murder by terror threat or other felony charge in September of 2018.

The text of the indictment states that on June 4, Cedric McGill Jr. “did then and there intentionally cause the death of an individual, namely Bertha McGill, by exposing her to smoke and fire, and the defendant was then and there in the course of committing or attempting to commit the offense of arson.”

Bertha McGill, who was seriously injured in a June 4 house fire, died at UTMB Galveston on June 16, according to Lt. Garrett Foster with the Jasper Police Department.

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When Cedric McGill Jr. was arrested, he was originally charged with first-degree felony arson causing bodily injury or death and felony unauthorized use of a motor vehicle. That charge was later upgraded to capital murder by terror threat or other felony.

A previous East Texas News story stated that Jasper police and firefighters responded to a home in the 200 block of Othello Street after a neighbor reported that the home was on fire. The neighbor also told the 911 dispatcher that Bertha McGill, who was confined to a wheelchair, was inside the residence.

Jasper firefighters were able to remove Bertha McGill from the home, but she suffered severe smoke inhalation.

After the fire was extinguished, firefighters noticed that the fire appeared to be intentional and notified JPD.

Officers learned that McGill’s grandson was also living in the home but was not at the house when the first responders arrived.

Cedric McGill II later arrived at the home and was subsequently arrested on an unrelated charge.

Through an investigation, the City of Jasper Fire Marshall’s Office and the State of Texas Fire Marshall’s Office were able to obtain evidence that provided probable cause to arrest Cedric McGill, Jr. for first-degree felony arson-causing bodily injury.

Previous stories: Jasper County grand jury indicts man in fire-related death of his grandmother

Jasper woman injured in house fire dies; arson investigation still ongoing

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