Police and firefighters, called by a good Samaritan, found a woman in Wichita last monday doing an impression of the cartoon character, the Human Torch. But she didn’t light herself up — an unknown suspect, about whom all the cops know is that he’s black and male, did.
Wichita police say a woman was sexually assaulted, hit on the head, and set on fire Monday night in Fairmount Park.
According to police, the woman was on the ground, almost in a crawl, barely moving, and naked.
The flames from the fire were about 2 to 4 feet high. [Neighbor Johnye] McPherson stayed with the woman until firefighters arrived. [It was Ms. McPherson who called 911, saving the burned woman’s life].
According to Wichita police Captain Troy Livingston, the woman suffered burns on 55 percent of her body and is currently in critical condition but has slightly improved.
Police are still trying to figure out if this was random or if the woman was targeted. Either way, Livingston called it a “disgusting crime.”
Had this monster used a firearm in his crime, well-meaning people (and other, less-well-meaning ones) would be calling for disarming the multitudes who didn’t do it, as if they were collectively responsible for his crime.
The problem isn’t lighters, of course, and it’s not guns. It’s monsters.
When we put it that way, what’s the big deal? Everyone knows how best to handle monsters.
Despite the best efforts of Ms McPherson and Wichita police and firefighters, and those of the doctors and staff of Via Christi Hospital St Frabcis, the victim in the case passed away Saturday.
She was 36-year-old Letitia Davis, originally from Topeka.
Cornell McNeal is charged with Capital Murder, Rape, and Arson in her death. It appears to have been a random attack. Initially, “the community” seemed to hold to its stop-snitching ethos, but when the reward was raised to $2,500, the phones of The Man began to ring.
McNeal has a long criminal history, with numerous examples of violence towards women. Police are examining the possibility that he is connected to a string of rapes at nearby Wichita State University.