Yosemite Lakes Park arson trial coming to a close

Closing arguments finally began in a three month long arson trial. (KFSN)
April 28, 2014 6:36:20 PM PDT
Closing arguments finally began in a three month long arson trial.

Kenneth Jackson and Alice Waterman are accused of setting dozens of fires and burning down one home in the Coarsegold community of Yosemite Lakes Park last year.

The long and complex arson trial continued Monday morning with an hour's worth of jury instructions. Then in the afternoon, the prosecution began its closing arguments.

Sr. Deputy District Attorney Sally Moreno said, "I'm confident when you evaluate the evidence, you will find these defendants guilty beyond a reasonable doubt."

Senior Deputy District Attorney Sally Moreno walked jurors through all of the fires individually, reminding them of the testimony and other evidence in each case. Jackson is accused of setting more than 30 fires in Coarsegold, including one that destroyed a family's home. Prosecutors say Waterman was involved in at least ten of the fires that started on the couple's own property.

Moreno also showed pictures of what investigators believe are incendiary devices made of cigarettes and match heads that were found at many of the scenes. And she talked about all of the times Jackson was caught on surveillance cameras near the fires.

But defense attorneys have previously argued their clients were never actually seen starting any of the fires and that mistakes were made during the investigation.

Prosecutors plan to finish their closing arguments Tuesday. Then two of the three defense attorneys will get their turn.

After final remarks from the prosecution, jurors will finally begin the difficult task of sorting through months of testimony by dozens of witnesses.

If convicted, the maximum possible sentences are 48 years for Jackson and 18 years for Waterman.

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