Judge refuses to grant shock probation for woman who set fire to Christmas wreaths, flags
A woman sentenced to 20 years in prison for setting Christmas wreaths on fire will not be getting out of jail anytime soon.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A convicted arsonist, who terrorized the Metro Louisville area for nearly two years, wants to get out of prison early.
Linda Lee went before a judge on Monday morning to ask for shock probation.
She was all smiles as she walked into the courtroom in handcuffs and jail-issued orange jumpsuit, but the smile didn't last.
"So we are here today to address the motion for shock probation," said Judge Ann Bailey-Smith.
In August of last year, Lee was sentenced to 20 years in prison for torching Christmas wreaths and starting fires at more than 40 homes. The fires happened between 2012 and 2014.
"She not only confessed, she actually went with investigators - and drove around with them and showed different things that she had done," said Lee's Defense Attorney Brian Butler.
But after less than a year in prison, Lee is asking to go home early. She also blames her crime spree on health problems and an abusive marriage.
"She dealt with that relationship by drinking to extreme excess," Butler explained.
The courtroom was packed with Lee's victims and firefighters who responded to the scenes.
"When Ms. Lee started these fires, she had no idea who was in the house," said Cortney Hardin, assistant commonwealth's attorney.
And then one by one Lee's victims addressed the court.
Devin and Abie Cameron are two of them. They both use wheelchairs and have a young child in the home.
"When we woke up, the house, the front entrance was ablaze," Abie Cameron said. "She had no idea who was behind those doors, it was me and Devin and our 5-year-old child."
"I too have heart problems, I have a pacemaker, defibrillator, I'm diabetic -- but she burned up all my medicine; she burned up everything I own," said Lee Decker, another fire victim.
After hearing from attorneys and victims, Judge Bailey-Smith ruled on the motion for shock probation.
"I think you need some serious help, but I also think you need to be punished. I don't think that you've been punished long enough based on what all you've put these people thru. So, I am going to have to deny your motion for shock probation," said Judge Bailey-Smith.
Lee's attorney said she has paid restitution and is getting professional counseling while incarcerated.
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