Crime - Sacto 911

Former correctional officer faces prison for arson, domestic violence

A former correctional officer is facing three years in state prison after pleading no contest to arson and domestic violence charges.

William Joseph Babbitt entered a no-contest plea Thursday to felony arson of an inhabited structure or property, felony possession of flammable material and misdemeanor domestic violence, according to a Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office news release.

On Aug. 20, 2016, Babbitt set fire to the front door of the victim’s apartment. The victim, whom Babbitt suspected of dating his estranged wife, was asleep at the time. A neighbor saw the fire, alerted the victim and extinguished the fire.

Later that morning, Babbitt’s wife confronted him about the incident and Babbitt threw her to the ground, causing a scrape to her left arm, the news release said.

Babbitt at the time was employed as a correctional officer with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, according to the District Attorney’s Office.

Babbitt is to be sentenced Jan. 23 by Sacramento Superior Court Judge Stephen Acquisto.

Cathy Locke: 916-321-5287, @lockecathy