We are proud to announce that on Wednesday, March 11, 2015, the California State Parole Board voted to DENY parole for Arsonist Mario Catanio.
In l98l, Mr. Catanio was paid to set fire to a North Hollywood restaurant as part of an insurance fraud scheme. In the course of fighting that fire, eight Los Angeles City Firefighters were injured and one, Thomas Taylor, lost his life. Brother Taylor, a second-generation Firefighter, was only 34-years old when he was killed. He left behind a wife and two children who grew up without a father. Mr. Catanio was arrested eight months later and sentenced to 25 years to life in prison for murder and federal mail fraud.
Since his conviction, Mario Catanio has consistently shown little to no remorse for his crime that resulted in the death of an LAFD Firefighter.
LAFD Captain II Frank Lima, the President of the United Firefighters of Los Angeles City, joined LAFD Chief Ralph Terrazas at the Parole Board hearing and testified, "Because of Inmate Catanio’s crime, a department lost our brother, a father lost his son, a wife lost her husband, and two young children lost their father forever. Do not allow a convicted arsonist that committed murder to be granted parole. It’s simply not fair to so many people who have lost so much over the years. Keep Mario Catanio in prison."
Thankfully, the Parole Board listened to Captain Lima, Chief Terrazas, and the Taylor family in denying the release of Mr. Catanio.
UFLAC would like to thank LAFD Chief Ralph Terrazas – who testified with labor at the Hearing and made it a priority to keep Mr. Catanio behind bars.
We would also like to thank LA City Councilman Paul Krekorian for writing a letter to the Parole Board and for passing a City of Los Angeles Resolution – both encouraging the Board to deny release. Thanks also to the State of California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones, who wrote a similar letter to the Board.