Woman Arrested for Setting Herself on Fire

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Tarrant County Jail
    Rona Elaine Faris was indicted on attempted capital murder charges. Police said she started a fire that left her burned.

    An Irving woman has been cleared after being falsely accused of dousing her ex-girlfriend with gasoline and setting her on fire in May, 2010.

    Olufunke Whitehead was originally arrested by Bedford police and charged with assault and arson for the incident. Whitehead always maintained her innocence.

    In a shocking turn of events Monday, two-and-half years later, police arrested Whitehead’s accuser, Rona Elaine Faris, on an indictment of attempted capital murder.

    Investigators now say it was Faris—not Whitehead—who started the fire in the home while her parents were there. She was also indicted on a second count of arson.

    The blaze sent Faris to the hospital in critical condition. The fire caused obvious injuries to her, which are visible in her mug shot released Monday by the Tarrant County Jail.

    "Both counts are first-degree felonies punishable by up to life in prison" Melody McDonald with the Tarrant County District Attorney’s Office said Monday.

    Faris was in the Tarrant County Jail Monday afternoon with a bond set at $500,000.

    When asked about Whitehead being arrested for something she didn't do, Bedford Police Sgt. Jerry Buford said, "We obviously wish that had not been the case, however we were going the direction we were going based off the victim's initial outcry of what happened."

    Buford said the department is taking steps to make sure any arrest record Whitehead has from this case are taken care of.

    "Because it is inappropriate to talk about a pending case, our office will not comment or elaborate further at this time," McDonald said.