After being recently freed for an arson conviction, a 32-year-old Lawton woman is back behind bars for what investigators call her predilection for starting fires.

Sherri Renee Wetzel, 32, made her initial appearance Tuesday in Comanche County District Court where she was charged with a felony count of third-degree arson as well as a misdemeanor count of obstructing police, records indicate. The crime is punishable by up to 10 years in prison.

Wetzel was arrested Sunday night after police were called to 108 NW 14th Street on the report of an assault involving a knife.

A witness said Wetzel had gone into his backyard. According to the probable cause affidavit, officers heard yelling and when entering the backyard, were greeted by smoke coming from an unknown direction. While making their way through the “labyrinth of a back yard,” officers followed a voice into the alley where Wetzel was seen standing.

Wearing all black, Wetzel yelled at the officers before taking off running, the affidavit states. After being taken into custody, officers found a pocket knife in her coat as well as a lighter.

According to the affidavit, investigators discovered the source of smoke was a t-shirt that had been set on fire with the intent to set fire to 106 NW 14th Street. A small area of dirt was dug out behind some plywood and scorch marks showed it appeared Wetzel had tried to set fire to the home.

The witness told police Wetzel had been at the house earlier in the day and left. When he told her another person wasn’t there, he said she pulled out a knife, pushed him and kicked him between the legs, the affidavit states.

Wetzel pleaded guilty in November 2020 to a felony count of third-degree arson, records indicate. She received a 10 year sentence with the Department of Corrections with all but the first year suspended. She had been in jail until recently.

Wetzel admitted to starting a trash container fire in March 2020 on Lawton’s west side as well as another outside fire at 2007 SW B.

Written by Scott Rains:

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