Mother Asks For Mental Disease Assessment

Posted On February 13, 2012

Vanessa Dean

Hamilton County

 Sheriff’s Office

(Lawrenceburg, Ind.) – Vanessa Dean, the mother who allegedly tried to kill her son by setting their Hidden Valley home on fire, is asking a judge for a mental evaluation.


Dean’s attorney filed a motion for a Defense of Mental Disease of Defect in Dearborn Circuit Court last week.


The 41-year-old was charged last month with Attempted Murder, Arson, and Neglect of Dependant following an investigation by the Dearborn County Fire Investigation Team.


Firefighters responded to Dean’s home on Alpine Drive the afternoon of October 13 for a report of a house fire. Dean allegedly fled the burning structure, but left her four-year-old son inside to die.


Dean’s mother-in-law watched in horror from outside the locked doors of the home. Luckily, neighbors were able to rescue the boy.


Dean told EMTs she set the home ablaze in an attempt to kill herself and her child because she thought police were going to take her son away.


Investigators were immediately suspicious of the fire’s cause when they discovered a gas can inside the home.


Dean was arrested on a warrant in Miamitown, Ohio on January 20. She was extradited to Dearborn County where she posted a $2,505 bond to get out of jail four days later.


A pretrial hearing is scheduled for March 9.




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