A 41-year-old woman was sentenced Thursday to five years in prison for setting her homes and car on fire to reap insurance payments.
Andrea Michelle Robinson, who pleaded guilty Jan. 6, also admitted welfare fraud while not disclosing her income from insurance claims. She pleaded guilty to six counts of arson, three counts of grand theft and multiple counts of insurance fraud, according to court records.
Robinson’s first arson was in her 12-year-old daughter’s bedroom as she slept elsewhere in their Rancho Santa Margarita house in August 2009, according to prosecutors. She received $25,000 from her insurer, prosecutors said when she was charged in August 2013.
Neighbors who saw the blaze and broke a window to pour water on the flames.
In May 2011, when Robinson was living in Aliso Viejo, she set fire to the master bedroom and left the house, according to prosecutors. Robinson told investigators she blew out a candle before exiting the house, according to prosecutors.
Robinson collected $46,000 from her insurance company then, prosecutors said.
Robinson set fire to her Volkswagen Passat on a street in Santa Ana and then went to the Westfield Main Place Mall, prosecutors said. When investigators contacted her, Robinson said the vehicle must have been stolen from the Westfield parking lot, prosecutors said.
Robinson received a $9,600 insurance payment for the vehicle fire, prosecutors said.
On June 1, 2012, Robinson set fire to a carpet in the bedroom of the Laguna Niguel apartment where she lived, prosecutors said.
On June 6, 2012, Robinson torched a carpet in the bedroom of the Laguna Niguel apartment, claiming to investigators that a neighbor hurled a burning object into Robinson’s home, prosecutors said. Investigators also noticed scorch marks from the June 1 blaze, prosecutors said.
Robinson moved from New Mexico to Orange County in July 2008. Since then she has illegally collected about $85,000 in housing, welfare and MediCal, prosecutors said.
Despite the claims of need for welfare, Robinson bought expensive electronics, designer handbags and drove several cars, including a Land Rover.
—City News Service