HAGERTOWN, Md. (AP) — A Washington County judge has ordered a western Maryland woman committed to the state’s maximum-security psychiatric hospital after she set fire to her home the day she and her family were to be evicted in foreclosure proceedings.
Forty-eight-year-old Karen Gillespie of Sharpsburg was convicted of first-degree arson Monday in Hagerstown. The plea deal included an agreement for her commitment to the Clifton T. Perkins Hospital Center in Jessup until she is deemed no longer a threat to herself and others.
A state psychologist found that Gillespie was suffering from depression and post-traumatic stress disorder when she set her home and garage on fire in May while her husband was at work and their two children were at school. A dog and a cat died in the blaze.
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