Woman in D'Iberville arson case pleads guilty

Woman in D'Iberville arson case pleads guilty
Witnesses took the stand on Wednesday. (Photo source: WLOX News)
Witnesses took the stand on Wednesday. (Photo source: WLOX News)

HARRISON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - As prosecutors in Harrison County tried to link Krystal Gonzalez to a fire that torched part of a D'Iberville apartment complex, Gonzalez changed her plea to guilty on Wednesday.

Under oath, Gonzalez confessed to igniting her boyfriend's shirt, causing the fire that spread to 20 units on Auto Mall Parkway. Prosecutors had evidence that Gonzalez used FaceTime to show her boyfriend the burning shirt.

Through her attorney, Gonzalez said she was so drunk, she had little recollection of the fire.

Sentencing has been delayed until March 24, Gonzalez could spend 5 - 20 years in jail.

The first five witnesses were all residents of Arbor View Apartments, and described what they saw the night of the March 2014 fire. After the second witness, Crosby (Krystal's attorney) raised a motion for a mistrial, saying the prosecution was using the apartment witnesses to draw sympathy toward the jury. Judge Schmidt overruled his motion, and the trial resumed.

Witness six was a witness to the fire, and witness seven was a former Biloxi police officer who interacted with Gonzalez earlier that evening at Zeppelin's in Biloxi. He said he was called about a dispute she was having with her boyfriend, and Gonzalez appeared to be intoxicated.

Witness eight was a friend of Gonzalez who claims to have been been drinking with her all day, March 4, 2014, which was Fat Tuesday. The witness told the court that Gonzalez called her the day after the fire, claiming she saw it but wasn't in her apartment that night.

Witness nine was a gas station employee who claims Krystal came in intoxicated, and asked to use his phone. The witness said Gonzalez called the jail to see if her boyfriend had been arrested.

Surveillance video from the gas station that night was also shown in court.

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