PROVIDENCE -- Prosecutors said yesterday they would seek the maximum prison term for a former rock band tour manager who ignited pyrotechnics that sparked a deadly 2003 fire.
Daniel Biechele pleaded guilty in February to 100 counts of involuntary manslaughter for setting off the pyrotechnics that triggered the Feb. 20, 2003, fire at The Station nightclub in West Warwick. He could serve a maximum of 10 years in prison under his plea agreement. Superior Court Judge Francis Darigan will determine the sentence.
Biechele, meanwhile, has written personal letters of apology to the families of the 100 people killed in the fire. The handwritten letters have been delivered to Darigan and will be given to family members after Biechele's sentencing hearing next month. ''Mr. Biechele feels genuine sorrow at what happened in this case, and he's been wanting to say something to the victims for a long time," Biechele's lawyer, Tom Briody, said yesterday.
The attorney general's office announced late yesterday that it had filed a memo recommending that Biechele receive the toughest prison term possible under the plea deal, saying Biechele had acted ''callously, carelessly, irresponsibly and criminally."
But it also acknowledged that Biechele, 29, has no prior criminal history, has accepted responsibility for the fire, and has cooperated with investigators.
His sentencing hearing is scheduled to begin May 8 and could last several days as relatives of those killed address the judge on how the fire affected their lives.
Briody would not say whether he would ask Darigan to weigh the letters as a factor for a lighter sentence, but he did say it was Biechele's decision to write the notes.