GOLDEN, Colo. (Oct. 3, 2023) – Today, one of the juveniles responsible for the fire at the Tiffany Square apartments that killed two and injured many others was sentenced to 7 years in the Colorado Department of Human Services (CDHS) Division of Youth Services (DYS).
The deadly fire happened early in the morning on Oct. 31, 2022, at the Tiffany Square Apartments, located at 935 Sheridan Boulevard. Ten people were injured, and two victims died, 31-year-old Kathleen Payton and 10-year-old Jazmine Payton-Aguayo. All residents of the 32 units were displaced. The investigation quickly revealed that the fire was intentionally set.
On Nov. 6, 2022, two juveniles (ages 14 and 12 at the time) were arrested by the Lakewood Police Department and have remained in custody since their arrest.
On Jul. 24, 2023, the now fifteen-year-old juvenile pled guilty to the following charges:
1st COUNT: MURDER IN THE FIRST DEGREE (F1)
2nd COUNT: MURDER IN THE FIRST DEGREE (F1)
59th COUNT: AGGRAVATED JUVENILE OFFENDER (SE)
60th COUNT: AGGRAVATED JUVENILE OFFENDER (SE)
101st COUNT: CRIMINAL ATTEMPT TO COMMIT MURDER IN THE FIRST DEGREE (F2)
102nd COUNT: FIRST DEGREE ARSON (F3)
As a result of this plea, the juvenile was adjudicated an Aggravated Juvenile Offender and faced 5-7 years in DYS.
Today, victims and their families filled the courtroom, many wearing pink and purple, which were Jazmine’s favorite colors. The hearing was closed to the media.
Deputy District Attorneys Margaret Crabb and Riley Gonya argued that the maximum sentence, with no pre-sentence confinement credit, was necessary and justified and the only way to serve the community’s and the juvenile’s interests.
Ultimately, the judge imposed the maximum sentence of 7 years in DYS with 113 days of pre-sentence confinement credit.
The co-defendant charged in this case is set for a status hearing on Oct. 16, 2023. He remains in custody and is presumed innocent.
Names are not being released due to their ages. This is the full extent of information that will be released at this time, pursuant to 19-1-304 of the Colorado Revised Statutes.