Arsonist in Triple Fatal Fire Sentenced to Life in Prison

A man convicted in 2013 of deliberately setting fire to a home in New Haven that killed a family of three has been sentenced to life in prison.

Hector Natal, 29, was sentenced Wednesday for committing arson at a multi-family house on Wolcott Street in 2011. Three family members, including Wanda Roberson, 42, her son, Quayshawn Roberson, 8, and her niece, Jaquetta Roberson, 21, died in the blaze.

"The sorrow and death created here is just incomprehensible," said U.S. Attorney Dierdre Daly. "The victims were complete innocents."

Authorities said Natal and his father, Hector Morales, 51, were part of a drug dealing business and set the fire on March 9, 2011 in retaliation after a customer failed to pay back a drug debt.

"Someone else owed him money. He took it out on my family. There are three sets of families in that house," said Cassandra Roberson, a relative of the victims.

Morales, who drove Natal to and from the scene, was found guilty of trying to help his son cover up the arson and is serving a 14-year prison sentence.

Family members of the victims expressed relief at the knowledge Natal will spend the rest of his life behind bars.

"We got justice. I'm happy. I feel better. Now I can go on with my life," said Quayshawn's father, Lawrence Alexander.

"It doesn't bring my babies back," said Margaret Roberson. "But at least he'll never do it to anybody else."

Contact Us