EL CAJON (CNS) - A man who set fire to a Greek Orthodox church in Rancho San Diego and attacked a cellmate four days after his arrest pleaded guilty Monday to arson and assault with intent to commit mayhem.
Pursuant to his plea and following a full evaluation by mental health professionals, attorneys on both sides agreed that Darin Wayne Williams was legally insane at the time of both offenses.
Williams, 39, will be sent to a state mental hospital for up to seven years and four months, with possible two-year extensions after that for the rest of his life, Deputy District Attorney David Williams III said.
Formal sentencing was set for Nov. 19 in El Cajon.
Williams was arrested Jan. 27 within hours of a fire that caused about $250,000 in damage to Saint Gregory of Nyssa Greek Orthodox Church in the 1900 block of Maryann Way at Jamacha Road.
No one was injured in the 4 a.m. blaze, which was investigated by the sheriff's Bomb/Arson Unit and the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
The defendant was known to church officials before the fire, the prosecutor said.
Shoppers were out before dawn in the U.S. for fun and for deals, as retailers that have had a tough year were hoping to bring customers to their stores and websites for Black Friday, one of the biggest shopping days of the year.
A charity run, meals for the needy, a long-running music festival and -- shhh! -- holiday shopping were on tap for Thanksgiving Day in San Diego.
The average price of a gallon of self-serve regular gasoline in San Diego County was at its highest amount on Thanksgiving since 2013 Thursday, despite dropping for 10 consecutive days.
Shoppers are hitting the stores on Thanksgiving as retailers under pressure look for ways to poach shoppers from their rivals.
The California Highway Patrol arrested 15 in San Diego County on suspicion of drunken driving, during the first night of its annual Thanksgiving "maximum enforcement period."
The always-heated topic of whether to begin holiday shopping on Thanksgiving Day will be raised again Thursday, as many chain stores will open their doors around San Diego one day before the so-called "Black Friday."
A charity run, meals for the needy, a long-running music festival and holiday shopping are on tap for Thursday's Thanksgiving Day in San Diego.