DAUPHIN COUNTY, Pa. (TCD) -- A 35-year-old man faces to 30 to 60 years in prison for the 2019 death of his girlfriend’s mother and arson charges.
The Dauphin County District Attorney’s Office wrote in a statementthat Judge William Tilly sentenced Calvin Purdie to 20 to 40 years for third-degree murder and 10 to 20 years for aggravated arson. Penn Live reports Purdie was convicted in November 2021 of third-degree murder and three counts of arson. He was acquitted on a first-degree murder charge. That was Purdie’s second trial because the first jury reportedly could not agree on a verdict.
According to the District Attorney’s Office statement, Purdie strangled 49-year-old Charlotte Chaplin to death then lit the house on fire as an attempt to "cover up the murder." Purdie’s girlfriend and their 4-year-old daughter were sleeping in the residence on West Chocolate Avenue when he set it ablaze. Additionally, a firefighter and two police officers were injured as a result of the fire.
The autopsy reportedly found Purdie’s DNA under Chaplin’s fingernails, according to Penn Live. Purdie also had scratches on his face the day after the killing.
Penn Live reports that during the trial, prosecutors argued Purdie viewed Chaplin as a "barrier" to his relationship with his girlfriend because Chaplin allegedly did not like him. He was reportedly out on parole on an aggravated assault charge when Chaplin was murdered.
According to the District Attorney’s Office, Purdie will not be eligible for parole until Aug. 27, 2049.