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Suspect tells local paper she had a "part" in death of Celeste Fronsman, Ohio woman found raped, burned

This undated photo provided by the Muskingum County Sheriff's Dept., shows 20-year-old Katrina Marie Culberson of Canton, Ohio, who has been charged with kidnapping and aggravated arson in the death of 29-year-old Celeste Fronsman. AP Photo/Muskingum County Sheriff's Dept.

Katrina Culberson is one of three suspects charged with kidnapping and aggravated arson in the death of 29-year-old Celeste Fronsman
AP Photo/Muskingum County Sheriff's Dept.

(CBS/AP) ZANESVILLE, Ohio - An Ohio woman who pleaded not guilty Wednesday in the gruesome killing of another woman found covered in burns by the side of a rural road has admitted she took a part in the death and said she wants "to be a human being again."

Katrina Culberson, 20, 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 the 29-year-old Fronsmon on Aug. 26 on a road near Zanesville in eastern Ohio. She was raped and burned and had a strap around her neck. Fronsmon 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 and two others are charged with aggravated murder, kidnapping and aggravated arson. Monica Washington, 24, also pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Another suspect, 33-year-old LaFonse Dixon, was indicted Wednesday on two additional conspiracy charges for allegedly planning or helping to plan the crime. His first court hearing is set for next week.

Culberson declined to tell the Times Recorder any other details besides that she, Washington and Dixon "all had a part in it."

"I want to be a human being again, not some monster," she said in the interview. "Some of the decisions I've made are not even the real Katrina. I just want to be normal."

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."

Culberson said she is Dixon's longtime girlfriend. Both she and Fronsmon 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.

She added that "drugs make you do dumb things."

"They make you numb, and it's really not even you doing them," she said.

Complete coverage of the Celeste Fronsman case on Crimesider


  • Crimesider Staff

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