A convicted arsonist has admitted that she put a rope around the neck of a fellow inmate at the federal prison in Waseca, Minn., and choked the woman.

Felecia Thomas, 46, pleaded guilty Friday in federal court in Minneapolis to assault with a dangerous weapon.

On June 10, 2011, Thomas, who was at the time serving a sentence in Waseca for a 2004 arson and explosives conviction, assaulted the inmate with a rope removed from a laundry bag.The victim survived.

Questioned immediately after the attack, Thomas told a prison lieutenant, "I choked her. I'm tired of nitpicking. I choked her," according to court records.

The prison at Waseca holds nearly 1,100 inmates and has housed only women since January 2009. A onetime campus of the University of Minnesota, the Federal Correctional Institution Waseca opened as a prison for men in August 1995 and began its transition into a women's prison in October 2008.

Thomas is now incarcerated at a federal facility in Texas.

The arson case against Thomas stemmed from her throwing two homemade gas bombs into an apartment in Dublin, Ga., burning a 13-year-old boy inside. Police said Thomas had been in a dispute earlier that day with someone who lived there. She was sentenced to more than 17 years in prison for that crime.

Paul Walsh • 612-673-4482