Woman reaches plea deal
GLOVERSVILLE – The mother of a child who started a fatal fire on Fifth Avenue in March has reached a plea agreement with prosecutors.
Jamie L. Ormanian, 32, pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree harassment, a violation, in satisfaction of the charge of endangering the welfare of a child.
Police said Ormanian left her three children, ages 2, 4 and 12, in the home without adequate supervision for a short period. During the time she was gone, a child in the house used a lighter to set a blanket on fire in the living room on the first floor, police said. A 41-year-old man in the house died as a result of the fire.
Ormanian had originally been charged with three counts of endangering the welfare of a child, a misdemeanor.
Fulton County Assistant District Attorney James Riley said Ormanian took the plea Nov. 25 to the harassment violations to cover all charges.
He also said she was required to pay a fine and surcharge and agreed to a one year conditional discharge where she will be required to attend parenting classes at the Department of Social Services.
“It was in full satisfaction of all charges pending,” Riley said.
Ormanian’s attorney Michael Smrtic didn’t return phone calls seeking comment.
Two adults – Donald Larimore, 41, and Marcus VanSlyke, 66 – were in the one-family house at the time of the fire, but they were intoxicated and unable to react to the situation, police said.
Larimore died from smoke inhalation and carbon monoxide intoxication in the fire, authorities said.
VanSlyke made it out of the house.
VanSlyke said during an interview in April that he had been drinking in the kitchen with Larimore when the fire started but the flames were already out of control by the time he realized what happened.
“The 12-year-old said there was a fire so I ran into the living room and it was already up to the ceiling,” VanSlyke said in April. “Donny was sitting at the table so when I came back out he was gone, so I thought he made it outside already.”
He said Ormanian left the 12-year-old responsible of the other children while she was gone.
“She was gone only about five minutes,” VanSlyke said.
Ormanian previously said she was not drinking the night of the fire and a Child Protective Services employee informed her it’s OK to leave a 12-year-old home alone to watch younger children.
However, Police Chief Donald VanDeusen said at the time of the incident the law doesn’t specify an age for a child to be left alone supervising others.