Glasgow Announces Ware Sentenced to 25 Years for Setting Fire to Landlord’s Home with Two People Inside

October 5, 2023

JOLIET— Will County State’s Attorney James Glasgow announces that Dion Ware, 53, of Crest Hill, was sentenced today to 25 years in prison for setting fire in 2021 to the single-family home in Crest Hill in which he was a renter. Ware was found guilty of Aggravated Arson (a Class X felony) following a jury trial that ended on March 20, 2023, and was sentenced by Associate Judge Kenneth Zelazo. 

In September 2021, Ware began renting out a room in a single-family Crest Hill home. A few days after he moved in, he and the homeowner became embroiled in a dispute, after which the homeowner told Ware that he would no longer be permitted to continue living there if his conduct continued. In response, Ware threatened to burn the house down. Shortly thereafter, a friend of Ware delivered two water bottles filled with gasoline to him in a bag.  As the homeowner was seated on her bed with a friend, Ware entered the room and after pouring out the gasoline from the bottles, lit a tissue and threw it on the floor. As Ware turned and exited, the carpet and bed went up in flames. The homeowner escaped through the first-floor window, and her guest escaped through the door to the room. Ware left the scene but called the homeowner and continued to threaten to harm her over the phone. Fortunately, the landlord and her guest were able to extinguish the fire. After extinguishing the fire, they called the police who ultimately apprehended Ware.

“Ware intentionally set a home ablaze knowing there were innocent people inside. His merciless conduct in purposely igniting gasoline in this home could easily have killed both victims, who fortunately escaped the flames through their own acts of bravery,” Glasgow said. “Today’s sentence protects the public from Ware’s malicious and uncontrolled rage.”

The sentence will be served at 85 percent. Ware will receive 746 days credit for time served. 

Glasgow commended Assistant State’s Attorney Mark Shlifka and Alexandra Molesky, Witness Advocate Emma Rannells, Detective Conor Sweeney with the Crest Hill Police Department, and Arson Investigator Brent Hullinger with Lockport Township Fire Protection District for their hard work in this matter.