Legal Analysis: Will Joseph Conti be charged in fatal house fire?

Posted at 5:30 PM, Jan 31, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-31 17:32:40-05

Funeral arrangements have been made for the boy who died in a house fire in Buffalo’s Lovejoy neighborhood Monday. 

Calling hours for Anthony Conti, will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday at the Michael A. DiVincenzo Funeral Home at 1122 E. Lovejoy Street. The funeral is set for 10:00 Saturday morning at SS. Peter & Paul Orthodox Church, 45 Ideal Street. 

Meanwhile, questions remain about whether Anthony’s father, Joseph Conti will be charged.      Court documents show his wife, who also lived at the Benzinger home, had filed one against him earlier this month. 7 Eyewitness News legal analyst, Florina Altshiler said violating that order is a misdemeanor charge.

There's also the issue of his actions related to the fire. Family members said it started accidently after Joseph used a torch to light a cigarette. Altshiler said he could face criminally negligent homicide or a more serious charge of manslaughter, but it all depends on his state at the time.

“That's what an accident is. Negligence is essentially an accident that resulted from somebody acting unreasonably. Negligence is an accident when somebody acts but should've known better but ignored a risk.”

Altshiler said a lot of this will boil down to statements Joseph made following the fire. We're told he is cooperating with authorities.