Arson suspect who feared zombie apocalypse to get psych treatment

Monica Berlin. San Mateo County Jail mugshot.

BY EMILY MIBACH
Daily Post Staff Writer

A woman who was charged with setting fire to 1,665 hay bales in Half Moon Bay because she was worried about a cult mass murder and a zombie apocalypse, and then led police on a chase to Atherton, will not be going to jail, but instead will be getting mental health treatment, the district attorney said.

Monica Berlin, 41, of El Granada, will be getting mental health treatment under court orders for the next year, said DA Steve Wagstaffe.

If Berlin does not follow her treatment program, criminal proceedings will be reinstated, Wagstaffe said.

Berlin set fire to hay bales at the corner of Highway 1 and Seymour Ave. in Half Moon Bay on June 26 and July 3, 2018.

Berlin had been a suspect regarding the fires because she was seen taking pictures of the burning hay bales. She allegedly started talking to a firefighter about a zombie apocalypse, but the firefighter told Berlin to go home.

On July 6, 2018, she allegedly led police on chase that reached up to 100 mph before she was arrested. She is charged with two counts of arson and fleeing from a police officer.

Berlin has been released from jail and will have to check in with the court on Jan. 31.