ST. PAUL (WCCO) — A 54-year-old man is charged with first-degree assault, after being accused of dousing his girlfriend’s son with lighter fluid and setting him on fire.
Curtis Reed, of St. Paul, will make his first court appearance Friday. According to the criminal complaint, Reed sprayed the lighter fluid on 19-year-old Antoine Willis’ head as he slept on a couch and set him on fire.
The complaint states Willis told police he “woke up on fire.” Willis then tried to flee, while on fire, but Reed allegedly chased him, continuing to spray more lighter fluid on the teen.
When officers arrived around 7 a.m. Wednesday to the residence on the 1300 block of Ames Avenue, they found Willis suffering from severe burns to his head, face, neck, hands and torso.
Willis was transported to Regions Hospital where he is being treated for severe burns. Doctors say he is expected to have permanent injuries.
“This is an unspeakably horrific assault that caused the victim great bodily harm. Our office will prosecute this case vigorously,” County Attorney John Choi said.