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Conviction upheld in 2012 Lombard murder, arson case

Todd Mandoline | DuPage County State's Attorney's office photo

The conviction of a man for setting a fire in 2012 that killed a woman in west suburban Lombard has been upheld by the Second District Appellate Court, the DuPage County state’s attorney’s office said Wednesday.

Todd Mandoline of Villa Park was 26 years old when he was sentenced to 39 years in prison for setting a fire that killed Paula Morgan in 2012, according to prosecutors.

Mandoline appealed his conviction by arguing that probable cause did not exist for his arrest and that statements he made to police in custody were not voluntary, according to the state’s attorney’s office. A three-judge panel sided with prosecutors.

On July 21, 2012, Mandoline was asked to leave a birthday party for 24-year-old Paula Morgan at her Lombard home, prosecutors said. He returned early the next morning and set fire to Morgan’s mother’s car in the driveway, which spread to the home and ultimately killed Morgan and severely injured one of her friends.

In 2015, Mandoline was sentenced to 27 years for murder and 12 years for aggravated arson, prosecutors said.