Prosecution, defense reflect on Andvik Trial verdictMoorhead, MN (WDAY TV) - Tara Andvik is now behind bars awaiting sentencing after being convicted on three counts of first degree arson. The verdict came in just before 10:00 Tuesday night. Andvik set fire to her deck, her barn and eventually her home.
Tara Andvik is now behind bars awaiting sentencing after being convicted on three counts of first degree arson. The verdict came in just before 10:00 Tuesday night. Andvik set fire to her deck, her barn and eventually her home.
The jury took just more than four-and-a-half hours to come to their verdict of guilty on all three counts of first-degree arson. It's a conviction the prosecution says many times can be extremely hard to prove.
Heidi Davies – Assistant Clay County Attorney: “It can be difficult to sort through all the evidence and be comfortable in your mind knowing that someone did something nobody saw them do.”
Andvik became very emotional, as did her husband Matt, as each juror was polled and reconfirmed the guilty verdicts. Matt was visibly shaken as he left the courtroom, but declined to comment to any media. At the request of both the prosecution and the defense, Andvik will undergo a Mental Health Evaluation
Steve Mottinger – Andvik’s Attorney: “There was indications during trial that there may be some issues there. I'm not a professional in that area, so we'll let those folks decide whether or not there are some things we need to be made aware of.”
Defense Attorney Steve Mottinger says the three letters that Andvik sent herself, the Forum and him were a problem.
Steve Mottinger: “They certainly weren't helpful.”
The prosecution says strong witnesses and expert testimony played a pivotal role.
Heidi Davies: “There were a lot of pieces to this puzzle. Six fires, her activities on Facebook, her communication with people that were some distance away. There were a lot of people who had part of the story to tell.”
A sentencing hearing has been scheduled for June 28th. Each count comes with a maximum $20,000 fine and 20 years in prison.