Wife Found Guilty of Murder for Setting Fire to Former Deputy Sheriff Husband and Watching Him Burn Before Calling 911

A 68-year-old lady in Pennsylvania will most certainly spend the rest of her life in prison for killing her husband, who was set on fire on their home’s back patio, and then claiming his death was suicide.

A Dauphin County jury found Evelyn Zigerelli-Henderson, a perennial candidate for elected office, guilty on one count of second-degree murder, aggravated arson, and arson in the 2022 death of 84-year-old Carmen Henderson, the former county deputy sheriff, according to court records reviewed by Law& Crime.

According to Fox affiliate WPMT in York, Pennsylvania, jurors considered for barely 45 minutes before returning with the numerous guilty findings.

According to Law&Crime, Zigerelli-Henderson contacted 911 early on June 16, 2022, to say that her husband had died after “starting a fire and burning himself.”

Wife Found Guilty of Murder for Setting Fire to Former Deputy Sheriff Husband and Watching Him Burn Before Calling 911

The dispatcher took notes on the call, writing, “Something is very wrong with the caller.” She is unwilling to answer inquiries, according to court filings.

When first responders arrived at the home at 5 a.m., they discovered the woman, subsequently identified as Carmen Henderson, charred to death and naked on the couple’s backyard patio. Authorities said they discovered fly larvae in his mouth and nose, indicating that he had been dead for a while.

Police said they immediately suspected Zigerelli-Henderson when her account of what transpired began to change.

Initially, Zigerelli-Henderson told detectives that she and her husband had argued the night before and that she awoke to find him burned to death outside, claiming suicide.

When prompted, she informed the emergency dispatcher that she had heard her husband scream at approximately 1 a.m. She changed her tale to suggest that his death was most likely accidental, caused by him smoking a cigar and creating a fire. The Dauphin County Fire Investigation Team determined that version of events to be “improbable.”

Wife Found Guilty of Murder for Setting Fire to Former Deputy Sheriff Husband and Watching Him Burn Before Calling 911

According to investigators, Zigerelli-Henderson’s story changed over time.

Zigerelli-Henderson “eventually settled” on telling police that she observed her husband seated on a folding camp chair with his lower trouser leg on fire, shouting her name for assistance. In this story, Zigerelli-Henderson stated that she picked up the phone to call 911 but opted not to. She couldn’t explain why she didn’t call when she saw he was on fire.

Investigators also questioned the defendant about her relationship with the deceased and identified a financial motivation for the murder.

The two were heavily in debt, and Zigerelli-Henderson told authorities that it was mostly her responsibility. Police claim she admitted to spending the couple’s money on vacation houses, day spas, and other high-end products and services. Zigerelli-Henderson also stated that their mutual firm, Henderson Limousine Service, failed because she mismanaged it.

According to authorities, the couple’s “severe debt” included paying $40,000 for a second mortgage on their property and unpaid taxes. They also expected sheriff’s deputies to grab their possessions.

“(Zigerelli-Henderson) stated that she knew she would be homeless shortly,” the criminal complaint read.(Zigerelli-Henderson) stated that C. Henderson would reside with his children from his previous marriage. (Zigerelli-Henderson) declared that she was not welcome to reside with the children.

As of Saturday morning, no date has been scheduled for Zigerelli-Henderson’s sentencing hearing.

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