For Immediate Release
July 23, 2018
A Jackson County judge on Monday found Thu Hong Nguyen guilty of multiple felony charges, including two Murder 2nd Degree counts, in connection with the Oct. 12, 2015, fire in Northeast Kansas City that killed two Kansas City firefighters, Larry Leggio and John Mesh, Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker announced today.
The judge, following a weeklong bench trial, found Nguyen, dob: 6/20/1972, guilty of two counts of Murder 2nd Degree, Arson 1st Degree, two counts of Assault 2nd Degree and one count of Arson 1st Degree. The judge did not convict Nguyen on the charge of Causing Catastrophe.
Nguyen will be sentenced on Sept. 14 at 8:30 a.m.
Jackson County Prosecutor Baker met with the family and supporters of the two fallen firefighters immediately after the verdict was issued this morning.
"Our community acknowledges, again, the incredible service of our firefighters, who every day take great risk to keep us safe. Unfortunately, the loss of these two firefighters and the injuries suffered by two other firefighters that night reminds of us of how dangerous their job is. We cannot forget their massive contributions to our community," Baker said.
Baker recalled that she first met with the families of Leggio and Mesh nearly three years ago. "It was great to see them today receive some relief from this judgment," she said.
Baker also acknowledged the great work of the county prosecution team and the support of the federal ATF, whose staff were invaluable investigators of the arson and subsequent deaths of the two firefighters.
"ATF is extremely grateful to the Jackson County Prosecutors Office and their diligence in seeking justice in this tragic case," said George Lauder, ATF Special Agent in Charge in Kansas City. "Our thoughts are with the Mesh and Leggio families."
Assistant Prosecuting Attorneys Dan Nelson, Theresa Crayon and Dan Portnoy prosecuted the case on behalf of the state of Missouri.
For more information, contact:
Director of Communication
Jackson County Prosecutor’s Office
Jean Peters Baker, Prosecutor
Work : (816) 881-3812
Mobile: (816) 674-3954
*Charges are only accusations and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until the defendant is either found guilty or has pleaded.