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Celeste Fronsman Murder: LaFonse Dixon sentenced to life in prison in death of Ohio woman who was beaten and burned

LaFonse Dixon Jr., center, listens in at the Muskingum County Common Pleas on Oct. 16, 2013, in Zanesville, Ohio. Dixon pleaded not guilty to murder, kidnapping and arson in the killing of 29-year-old Celeste Fronsman of Canton, who was found Aug. 26, 2012, burned and beaten. Fronsman died two days later from her injuries. (AP Photo/Times Recorder, Trevor Jones) Trevor Jones

LaFonse Dixon Jr., center, listens in at the Muskingum County Common Pleas on Oct. 16, 2013, in Zanesville, Ohio. Dixon pleaded not guilty to murder, kidnapping and arson in the killing of 29-year-old Celeste Fronsman of Canton, who was found Aug. 26, 2012, burned and beaten.
AP Photo/Times Recorder, Trevor Jones
(CBS/AP) ZANESVILLE, Ohio - LaFonse Dixon was sentenced Monday to life in prison without parole in the death of 29-year-old Celeste Fronsman, whose severely burned body was discovered along a roadside in August of 2012. Monica Washington, 25, was also sentenced to life in prison in the case.

"Ms. Fronsman died a horrific death at your hands," Muskingum County Common Pleas Judge Kelly Cottrill  told DIxon as she handed down his sentence, reports the Columbus Dispatch. "Your self-absorbed, anything-goes lifestyle led directly to her death."

Dixon, 34, was convicted Oct. 17 of aggravated murder, aggravated arson and kidnapping. He faced the death penalty, but a jury recommended he be sentenced to life in prison.

Two women, Katrina Culberson, 22, and Washington reportedly pleaded guilty in the case to avoid the death penalty. They testified that the trio took 29-year-old Fronsman from Canton to rural Muskingum County, where they beat her and choked her before she was set on fire and abandoned.


Fronsman lived for two more days, reports the paper. A driver reportedly discovered her wailing with more than 70 percent of her body burned.

Washington was also sentenced Monday. She reportedly received life in prison with the possibility for parole after 25 years on an aggravated murder charge, and 11 years on a kidnapping charge, which will run concurrently. 

Culberson's sentencing is slated for Wednesday.

Fronsman was a prostitute addicted to crack cocaine, reports the paper. She reportedly knew her attackers from her life on Canton's streets. The Dispatch reports that prosecutors said Dixon thought Fronsman had snitched on his drug dealing and brutalized her in retaliation.

Cottrill called the crime "horrific."

Complete coverage of the Celeste Fronsman murder on Crimesider

  • Crimesider Staff

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