Accused Arsonist Takes Stand In Her Own Defense

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WILKES-BARRE -- A woman on trial in Luzerne County for allegedly torching the apartment complex where she once lived took the stand in her defense today.

Gail Schneider grew hostile during the prosecution's grilling.

Gail Schneider had nothing to say as she left the Luzerne County Courthouse after taking the stand in her own defense Tuesday afternoon.

Schneider is on trial for allegedly torching the Lantern Lane apartments in Conyngham in September of 2010 and is facing numerous felony arson charges.

Investigators say Schneider used to live at the lantern lane apartments and set fire to the complex after she was evicted by the landlord.

On the stand, she became hostile and defensive during questioning from the prosecutors.

She denied being upset with her former landlord, accused prosecution witnesses of either lying or being mistaken about events surrounding the fire.

She said during police questioning after the fire, the troopers were extremely intimidating and she was afraid.

When the prosecution brought up evidence collected off her computer that showed searches for arson, lighter fluid and how to blow up a car, she said that she had been watching the TV show “Burn Notice” and was just curious about those things.

Ken Temborski is the owner of the Lantern Lane and has since rebuilt.

He says he feel confident the case has been made.

“After almost six or seven days of testimony, Pennsylvania State Police had done a great job, the Commonwealth,  the district attorney’s office presented their case well and think today was kind of mustard on the hot dog and we`ll have to wait and see tomorrow,” said Temborski.

Both sides rested Tuesday afternoon.

Closing arguments are expected to be heard Wednesday morning.