The Third Department determined the sentences for arson and tampering with evidence arose from a single act and, therefore, the sentences must run concurrently. Defendant had participated in tying her disabled child to a bed. When defendant returned home, the child had died. To conceal the evidence, defendant participated in setting the home on fire. Under these circumstances, the arson and tampering with evidence charges arose from a single act:
… County Court should not have imposed consecutive terms of imprisonment upon defendant’s convictions of arson in the third degree and tampering with physical evidence. … “Sentences imposed for two or more offenses may not run consecutively where, among other things, a single act constitutes two offenses” … . Given that the fire admittedly was set to conceal evidence, the arson and tampering with physical evidence convictions necessarily arose from a single act. As a result, although the terms of imprisonment imposed upon such convictions properly ran consecutively to the sentence imposed upon defendant’s conviction of manslaughter in the first degree … , the sentences imposed upon the arson and tampering convictions must run concurrently with one another … , and defendant’s sentence is modified to that extent. People v Franklin, 2022 NY Slip Op 04677, Third Dept 7-21-22
Practice Point: The defendant set a fire to conceal evidence and was charged with and convicted of arson and tampering with evidence. Because both convictions arose from a single act, the sentences must run concurrently.