Inmate pleads guilty to hiding lighter in vagina, starting prison fire

By Patrick Kernan - [email protected]

WILKES-BARRE — A city woman pleaded guilty on Wednesday after prosecutors said she hid a lighter in her vagina and started a fire in the Luzerne County Correctional Facility.

Danielle Housenick, 25, pleaded guilty to charges of arson, risking catastrophe, institutional vandalism and criminal mischief. She entered the pleas before county Judge David W. Lupas.

According to police, Housenick, who was an inmate at the county lockup at the time, started a fire in her cell on May 23, 2017. The fire was extinguished by corrections officers.

A member of the Pennsylvania State Police Troop P’s fire marshal division reported to the facility the next morning to assist in an investigation. The probe determined the fire was started using clothing and paper products, and that it was intentionally set.

Housenick allegedly told prosecutors she started the fire after hiding the lighter inside her vagina.

Housenick will appear before Lupas again on July 11, when she will be sentenced. Lupas ordered that a pre-sentence investigation be completed by July 3.

By Patrick Kernan

[email protected]

Reach Patrick Kernan at 570-991-6386 or on Twitter @PatKernan

Reach Patrick Kernan at 570-991-6386 or on Twitter @PatKernan