Jury Convicts Woman of Arson in Husband's Death

Jury Convicts Woman of Arson in Husband's Death

Staff Report
The Associated Press

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - A Central Texas jury has begun deliberating punishment for a woman convicted of first-degree arson in the bathtub burning death of her husband.

The Travis County jury deliberated five hours Monday evening before recessing in the punishment trial of Shriya Patel. She faces a sentence of five years to life in prison for the April 2012 incident that killed 29-year-old Bimal Patel.

Jurors deliberated two days before acquitting the 27-year-old woman of capital murder Monday but finding her guilty of first-degree arson. A capital murder conviction would have meant a sentence of life imprisonment without parole.

Prosecutors say she lured her husband to the tub, doused him with gasoline and set him on fire. The woman's attorney argued her husband wanted to kill himself and forced her to help.