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Chenango Sheriff: Jury Finds Franklin Guilty Of Murder, Arson in Son's Death

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CHENANGO COUNTY, N.Y. -

A Chenango County jury has found Ernest Franklin guilty of second-degree murder in the death of his 16-year-old disabled son, according to Chenango County Sheriff's officials.

Franklin was also convicted of arson and tampering with physical evidence after setting the family's Town of Guilford home on fire in an attempt to cover-up the crime.

Authorities arrested Franklin and wife Heather in March 2017. Heather is being tried separately. 

During the trial, prosecutors told jurors how the couple started thinking of ways to get rid of their adopted son beginning in February 2017. Jeffrey was deaf and non-verbal.

Chenango County Acting District Attorney Michael Ferrarese said they felt Jeffrey had become too much for them to handle.

Jurors also heard testimony from the two medical experts who conducted an autopsy which determined Jeffrey was killed before the fire.

Prosecutors say the pair acted on February 28, 2017 hours after watching the movie "Manchester By The Sea", in which one of the characters accidentally started a fire that killed his child.