ST. PAUL (WCCO) — A 19-year-old St. Paul man said that he thought his mother’s boyfriend was trying to burn him alive.

Antoine Willis is currently being treated at Regions Hospital in St. Paul for second- and third-degree burns.

He gave his account of the incident at a news conference Friday afternoon.

“All I know is I was asleep and then there was fire on my head when I woke up,” said Willis. “I took my shirt off and padded my head down. And then I ran out the back door and he was chasing me with a bottle of fluid and kept spraying it on me.”

NewsRadio 830 WCCO’s Samantha Smith Reports

Curtis Reed, 54, is charged with setting him on fire after Willis said he broke up an argument between Reed and his mother.

Police say Reed poured lighter fluid on Willis, who was asleep, and then ignited it.

Willis does not have health insurance and he’s going to need more hospital care.

For anyone interested in helping Willis, a fund has been set up for him at any Bremer Bank.

Comments (27)
  1. Me says:

    I hope this young man heals quickly and with as little pain as possible. I hope the mother’s boyfriend hurts a long time with as much pain as possbile in prison.

  2. Pate says:

    Comments I’ve seen on another local news site were derogatory towards this young man and where he lives. Would they have been more sympathetic if he was white? He’s a human being who was deliberately and seriously injured for defending his mother.Those other (unnamed) commentators should be ashamed..Instead of looking at a person’s skin they should be looking at the human.Personally I wish this young man a complete recovery and to continue to stand tall as he’s demonstrated so far.God bless him.

    1. cowgirl says:

      I totally agree. I hope his mothers boyfriend rots in hell. He needs to be punished, maybe get sprayed with lighter fluid and set on fire. See how he like it. I hope this young man makes a speedy recovery with as little pain as possible. God bless.

      1. Kieron says:

        yeah. I’ve been waiting for the commenter named “The Architect” to throw his weight around once again, now that we know more about this story. Nowhere to be found. Another Internet Tough Guy.

        1. TwinsRAwesome says:

          “The Architect” hasn’t shown his face since this story…I, too, am shocked. Probably out trying to save the world one comment at a time.

        2. Iconoclast says:

          Yeah, “The Architect” is a real waste of space.

      2. insignificant says:

        yeah,tooth for a tooth,eye for an eye justice seems fitting in cases like this,eh?…would probably make people think twice before harming someone

        1. Jim S says:

          No, it wouldn’t. The violence would only escalate. What would make people think twice is knowing that the system takes violent people off the playground for good – not just for a hand full of years. You get more time for embezzling than you do for beating your wife. That’s barbaric and backward. I don’t walk the streets at night worried that a computer hacker is going to jump out of the bushes. We need to stop “punishing” violent people with “time spent” in jail. Punishment is not justice. Wouldn’t it be great to know you could go anywhere in any town at any time? Isn’t this supposed to be a free country, after all? Instead, we cower and hide in safe neighborhoods.

  3. Jeff "Gangsta" J says:

    I still cannot believe that the guy who did this is only being charged with First Degree Assault. He obviously tried to kill this kid, and therefore the charge should be attempted murder.

  4. steve says:

    Jeff above was correct, check into his PD record. There is a lot more to this than the thug….I mean “kid” is telling…..

    1. youknowit says:

      Did you BOTHER to look at the birthdate for the person with the rap sheet? It was 1961. This young man is only 19. That rap sheet also goes back to 1992. You tell me how a 19 year old could have gotten a rap sheet in 1992 and be born in 1961. Shame on you for spreading lies.

  5. Jess says:

    I don’t care how much more there is to the story nothing justifies what this man did!

  6. anonymous says:

    Regardless of color, religion, or background… no one should be subjected to this type of abuse. Curtis Reed should be locked up for a long time and be required to make restitution in some form or another. No amount of punishment will right this wrong, and the physical and mental damage inflicted on this victom. I wish this young man a quick recovery, and a better future than he has already had.

  7. stuck with a dumb broad says:

    30 police calls to this house. The dumb mother should go to jail also.

    1. trustthroughfaith says:

      I wouldn’t use the term dumb broad, however it was a very unhealthy relationship that should have ended years ago. It is a shame that this young man has endured the pain and suffering for his mothers mistakes. I pray that he will be able to cleanse his soul, forgive, and make an amazing wonderful positive life for himself and not let this traumatic experience be an impact for his future. God Bless you and presevere forward young man and make a positive impact on your future and do not get caught up in your family’s disfunction.

  8. allan says:

    This is some kind of crazy behavior. He needs to be locked up and the key thrown away. Hope the kid recovers.

  9. youknowit says:

    You should be ashamed of yourself. Did you BOTHER to look at the birthdate for the person with the rap sheet? Tell me how a 19 year old was born in 1961. Shame on you for spreading LIES. According to that rap sheet, this boy would have either been in the womb or an infant when the first one occured.

  10. Janice says:

    Another woman interested in having a “boyfriend” at the cost of her kids.

    1. pleaae says:

      Great. Blame the women.

    2. Joy says:

      too true Janice. I am sick to death of women who have to have a man at all costs. 30 police calls later she should have been clued in to this man and what he was capable of.

  11. JKB says:

    My heartfelt wishes for a speedie and full recovery of this young mans injuries. MOM take the time to get to know yourself BEFORE you choose another loser of a boyfriend! NO person should accept abussive behavior as part of any relationship. In eight years she saw a lot of this and she should have kicked this SOB out long ago!

  12. JamieinMN says:

    This just makes me sick. What kind of monster could do this to someone?!?!!? Lock him up, throw away the key….or better yet, how about a PUBLIC burning?!!?! It would honestly give me great pleasure to see that coward of a man being burned alive.

    1. insignificant says:

      nah,you would barf,eh?

  13. Need help says:

    How many stories do we need to hear before we are willing to tax the rich to help pay for social services to help people in situations like this?

  14. Randy says:

    How much you want to bet that mom would go back to him in a heartbeat

  15. Bubbles - Bubble Shooter says:

    This is a great blog post. I will take more time looking into this subject.

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