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Press Release

Anchorage Woman Sentenced for 2012 Arson-Murder

October 15, 2019

(Anchorage, AK) – Anchorage Superior Court Judge Michael Wolverton has sentenced 32-year-old Gina Virgilio to 60 years in prison for murdering her fiancé Michael Gonzalez in 2012. Virgilio previously pleaded guilty to a single count of first-degree murder on the morning trial was scheduled to begin in April 2019. Pursuant to the plea agreement, Virgilio could have received a sentence between 30 and 70 years from the court.

Evidence at the sentencing hearing showed that emergency responders were dispatched to apartment B-7 at 201 McCarrey Street for a building fire in the early morning hours of June 8, 2012. Records showed the apartment was leased to Michael Gonzales and Gina Virgilio. At the apartment, Anchorage Fire Department found a deceased male identified as Michael Gonzales.

Anchorage Police Department officers contacted Michelle Virgilio, mother of defendant Gina Virgilio, who was listed as an emergency contact on the couple’s lease. Gina was with Michelle at that time and the pair came to the scene. Gina initially told officers Mr. Gonzales started the fire.

Later, however, Gina confessed to her mother that she had gone to a gas station and obtained gas and walked back to the apartment where Mr. Gonzales was asleep on the couch. Gina then poured gas on and around the couch. Gina told her mother she was at the front door when she lit some paper on fire and tossed it into the apartment, igniting the gas. When Mr. Gonzales woke up saying “hot hot,” Gina closed the door to the apartment with Mr. Gonzales still inside and ran from the location.

Michelle contacted investigators with the information. APD officers went to Providence Hospital where Gina was receiving treatment for her injuries. After she was released from the hospital, officers re-interviewed and arrested her.

In sentencing Ms. Virgilio, Judge Wolverton stated the case “represents as horrific an offense as I’ve ever dealt with.”

The Anchorage District Attorney’s Office thanks the Anchorage Police Department and the Anchorage Fire Department for their efforts in this matter.

More information about the Anchorage District Attorney’s Office is available at http://www.law.alaska.gov/department/criminal/adao.html.

CONTACT: Assistant Attorney General Katholyn Runnels at (907) 269-6306 or by email to the Office of Special Prosecutions at LawOSP@alaska.gov.

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Department Media Contact: Senior Assistant Attorney General Cori Mills at (907) 465-2132 or cori.mills@alaska.gov.