US teen admits to fatal arson after burning down wrong house over stolen iPhone, killing 5 - Hindustan Times
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US teen admits to fatal arson after burning down wrong house over stolen iPhone, killing 5

ByNikhita Mehta
May 22, 2024 06:48 PM IST

Bui used the Find My iPhone app to track his stolen phone, however, it led him to the wrong house which he erroneously set fire, killing 5 members of a family.

In a tragic case of mistaken revenge and an absurd case of technology addiction a Denver boy's quest for his iphone landed him in jail with charges of second-degree murder.

FILE - Investigators stand outside a house where five immigrants from Senegal were found dead after a fire in suburban Denver on Aug. 5, 2020. Kevin Bui pleaded guilty Friday, May 17, 2024, to a house fire that killed five members of the Senegalese family in 2020 in a case of misplaced revenge caused by mistakenly tracking his stolen iPhone to the home. (AP Photo/Thomas Peipert, File)(AP)
FILE - Investigators stand outside a house where five immigrants from Senegal were found dead after a fire in suburban Denver on Aug. 5, 2020. Kevin Bui pleaded guilty Friday, May 17, 2024, to a house fire that killed five members of the Senegalese family in 2020 in a case of misplaced revenge caused by mistakenly tracking his stolen iPhone to the home. (AP Photo/Thomas Peipert, File)(AP)

Kevin Huy Bui, now 20, has pleaded guilty to charges of second-degree murder for his role in a 2020 arson attack that killed five members of a Senegalese family. 

Bui used the "Find My iPhone" app to track his stolen phone, however, it led him to the wrong house which he erroneously set fire, killing 5 members of a family.

The fire, which occurred on August 5, 2020, resulted in the deaths of Djibril Diol, 29; Adja Diol, 23; their 22-month-old daughter, Khadija Diol, Hassan Diol, 25; and her 7-month-old daughter, Hawa Beye. The blaze, which police described as a "coordinated arson attack," also left three other occupants injured after they escaped through an upstairs window.

How was the fire planned?

Surveillance footage showed the trio wearing masks and hoodies, and at least one suspect holding a gasoline can. Police documents revealed that Bui had discussed the plan with his co-defendants on social media, expressing his intent to retaliate after being allegedly robbed. The warrant went on to say that detectives reviewed conversations between the trio on social media including one on July 15, 2020, where Bui told his friends he was robbed and another where he wrote "they gonna get theirs."

On Aug. 1, 2020, the warrant reads, Bui sent Seymour this message on Snapchat: "#possiblyruinourfuturesandburnhishousedown.

Bui was 16 years old at the time of the crime. Along with his co-defendants, Dillon Siebert and Gavin Seymour, he was prosecuted as an adult. As part of a plea deal, Bui now faces up to 60 years in prison when sentenced on July 2. He is awaiting his sentencing in the Denver County District Court on July 2

Siebert, who was 14 during the arson, pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in 2022. He received a sentence of three years in a juvenile facility followed by seven years in state prison. Currently incarcerated, Siebert's estimated parole release date is February 2029.

Seymour, who was 16 at the time, also pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in January. He was sentenced to 40 years in prison, with an estimated parole release date of November 2050.

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