The RCMP say one of the men charged with setting a sleeping teenager on fire at a house party in Kelowna, B.C., may have staged similar attacks in the past.
Constable Kris Clark said the 18-year-old victim was drunk when he fell asleep on the kitchen floor at the home during the early morning hours of Dec. 8.
The officer said the suspect allegedly poured a liquid on the back of the victim and then lit a match, while another suspect recorded the resulting fire on video.
Constable Clark said the teen suffered major burns to most of his back, but no one who was present in the home at the time told police about the incident, and the RCMP didn’t become aware of what happened until about 12 hours later.
“We received a report, basically from the hospital, that an
18-year-old man was receiving treatment for second- and third-degree burns after being intentionally set on fire,” he said.
Two Kelowna men, Matthew Sweet-Grant, 20, and Joshua McWhirter, 18, have been charged with aggravated assault and remain in custody.
Constable Clark said this kind of attack may have happened before and one of the accused may be involved.
“There’s information that we’ve obtained through the course of our investigation that leads us to believe this may not be the first time this has happened,” he said.
“So we’re asking anyone with any information regarding this incident or previous incidents to contact us.”
Constable Clark said the other cases may also involve people who had been incapacitated by drugs or alcohol.
The name of the victim in the latest incident is being withheld at the request of his family.