Before Alejandro Castro, 49, was to be sentenced, his lawyer told 437th District Court Judge Lori Valenzuela that his client suffered from mental problems, including a bi-polar disorder.

“There wasn’t really something that precipitated this as far as alcohol (or) drug use or anything like that,” David Dilly told the judge.“This is a long-standing battle that he has had.”

In November 2012, Castro set fire to a pickup truck which spread to two other vehicles parked at a North San Antonio apartment complex on Wilderness Oak Drive.

“I believe that it was just one of those times that he really had a significant meltdown as far as his psychiatric symptoms,” Dilly said following the sentencing.

He said his client gave no reason for setting the fire.

“He didn’t have a personal vendetta against anybody and he didn’t do it out of spite,” Dilly said. "He just succumbed to the severe mental illness.”

Castro was already facing charges in the past from criminal mischief to possession of marijuana.

They were dismissed as part of the plea bargain in the arson case.

For a list of recent stories Paul Venema has done, click here.