Woman admits taking part in gruesome Ohio killing
ZANESVILLE, Ohio (AP) — A woman charged in the gruesome killing of another woman found covered in burns and wailing in agony by the side of a rural road has admitted she had a part in the death and says she wants "to be a human being again."
Katrina Marie Culberson, who pleaded not guilty Wednesday in the killing, spoke to The Zanesville Times Recorder in a jailhouse interview over the weekend, admitting to having a role in the death of her friend Celeste Fronsman.
A driver found Fronsman, 29, on a road near Zanesville in eastern Ohio on Aug. 26. She had been raped and burned and had a strap around her neck. She died two days later at a Columbus hospital.
A coroner ruled Fronsman's death a homicide, but the exact cause of death could take more than a month to determine because of severe burns to 80 percent of her body.
Culberson, 20, and two others have been charged with aggravated murder, kidnapping and aggravated arson. Monica Jean Washington, 24, also pleaded not guilty to the charges in Muskingum County Common Pleas Court.
Another suspect, 33-year-old LaFonse Darney Dixon, was indicted Wednesday on those same charges and two additional conspiracy charges alleging that he planned or helped plan the crime. His first court hearing is set for next week.
Culberson declined to tell the Times Recorder any specifics, but she said that she, Washington and Dixon "all had a part in it."
"I want to be a human being again, not some monster," she said. "Some of the decisions I've made are not even the real Katrina. I just want to be normal."
Culberson's and Washington's Columbus attorneys did not immediately return calls for comment Wednesday. It was unclear whether Dixon had an attorney yet.
Culberson said Fronsman was her best friend and that she tried to help her put her life together.
"I've created a huge mess," she said. "Right now I can't even think positive. I want to ask God for forgiveness for everything I've ever done."
Meanwhile, Dixon denied involvement in Fronsman's death, telling the Times Recorder from jail that he was with family and friends when she was killed.
"Hey, I'm just a drug dealer just trying to sell my drugs and be with my family," Dixon said. "I watched my sister die in a house fire when I was young, and I'd never do anything like that to someone. I'm not a violent person, man. I'm a lover and a father. I just want out of here and be able to go home to my three boys and family."
Both Culberson, who said she is Dixon's longtime girlfriend, and Fronsman were involved in drugs and prostitution in the Canton area, according to Culberson and court records.
Culberson said she wanted to apologize to Fronsman's family but knows there's nothing she can say that will bring her back. "But they have to know the risks we took in our lifestyles," she said.
Culberson added that "drugs make you do dumb things."
"They make you numb, and it's really not even you doing them," she said.