Red Bank Woman Charged With Arson Could Serve Years Behind Bars

Reported by: Alisha Searl
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Updated: 5/03/2013 7:10 pm
Aggravated Arson; the punishment for this crime, if convicted, is at the very least twelve years in prison.

The worst case scenario, according to local attorney David Barrow, is this.

Barrow, adds, "It may even have a life without parole aspect to it.  So, it's just like first degree murder."

According to Red Bank Police, Rebecca Pendergrass, 21, admitted to setting her apartment on fire.

A neighbor tells us he even heard Pendergrass go up to an officer and say, "Arrest me."

Tylor Ford adds, "We knew she was a little out there."

Now, her mental health is being called into question.

But how could that affect the case?

Barrow weighs in, but we want to add that he does not represent either side.

Barrow adds, "The first thing to determine is competency to stand trial. If a person is found competent then they go through the trial process just like anyone else."

Barrow says, basically, if you know the difference between right and wrong, then you are competent.

He admits it's rare someone is not found competent.

If that does happen, Barrow says, "They'll make you competent by medication or counseling. Once you're competent, then you stand trial for whatever whatever you're charged with."

Now, according to Barrow, your mental health can can affect your sentencing if found guilty.

You could get a less severe sentence based on your history.

Eight people are still displaced because of the fire set Thursday morning.

Damage was estimated at around a quarter of a million dollars.

Pendergrass' bond is set at $25,000.
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