SUNBURY — “Justice was served in Northumberland County today.”
That was the reaction Tuesday of Northumberland County District Tony Matulewicz after a jury of seven women and five men found Misty Lynn Dunbar guilty on all 13 counts, including attempted murder, relating to a 2019 fire in Mount Carmel.
The jury needed an hour and 38 minutes to convict the 26-year-old Elizabethville woman who took the stand in her own defense, despite a video confession being played in court.
The jury saw through her testimony and found the former Mount Carmel woman guilty on 13 offenses each — including eight counts of arson and one count of criminal mischief, causing or risking a catastrophe, recklessly endangering another person and loitering and prowling at night.
Sentencing will be carried out within 90 days.
Dunbar had been free on $1 bail since May 2020. John Broda, who serves as a county public defender, filed a motion for nominal bail because his client’s incarceration exceeded 180 days from the date the criminal complaint was filed against her.
Following Tuesday’s verdict, Matulewicz requested bail revocation. President Judge Charles H. Saylor remanded Dunbar to jail in lieu of $350,000 cash bail.
Dunbar and Michelle Rhoads, 25, of Mount Carmel, were charged the day after a fire destroyed 434 N. Walnut St., extensively damaged 432 N. Walnut St., and left three people homeless on Aug. 13, 2019.
Following the incident, Dunbar told police she set the fire at the residence of Kelly Witmer and her boyfriend, Jason Dillow, of 434 N. Walnut St., in alleged retaliation for being thrown out of Witmer’s former home on North Vine Street.
Rhoads pleaded guilty Aug. 7, 2020, to a felony of aggravated arson and was sentenced Oct. 27 by Rosini to 2 1/2 to 5 years in state prison. She remains incarcerated at SCI-Cambridge Springs.
Rhoads was given credit for 377 days previously served in prison and was ordered to pay a $100 fine plus restitution in the amounts of $13,335 to Jason Dillow; $35,000 to Edward Koblinski; and $58,247.15 to National Subrogation Services.
Dunbar previously turned down a plea offer from the district attorney’s office in which she would plead guilty to a felony of aggravated arson and receive a sentence of 22 to 36 months in state prison.