A young woman “will never have the face she was born with” after being set on fire in a “horrific and unthinkable” attack in a park. Warning: Graphic
A young woman “will never have the face she was born with” after she was set on fire in a Philadelphia park last week in a “terrible and unthinkable” attack recorded on video, her family says.
Alyssa Morales, 36, suffered second- and third-degree burns on more than half of her body and is undergoing months of rehabilitation and skin grafts, according to a fundraiser organized by a family friend.
The bomber struck shortly after 11:30 p.m., Thursday, June 16, in Harrowgate Park, Philadelphia.
Emergency services were responding to reports of a garbage fire in the park when they found Morales with severe burns, 6ABC reported.
He was rushed to Temple University Hospital and is currently in a medical coma.
“She was in a lot of pain to identify herself when she arrived at the hospital and was listed as Jane Doe for two days before her family could see her,” the fundraising page said.
According to the page, Ms. Morales, known as “Bre”, was struggling with drug addiction and was homeless at the time. In 2020 she interviewed for her life by a YouTube director.
“She tried to clean up several times, but still could not defeat her demons,” the page said. “Even in the darkest days of her addiction, Alyssa would never physically harm anyone but herself.”
The horrific video of the incident circulating on social media shows Ms. Morales on the ground burning as several viewers approach.
Another clip shows her seriously injured, lying face down on the ground and moaning in pain.
A person can be heard on the phone at the emergency services. “Someone set her on fire, she has blood, she has burned, she is bleeding a lot – hurry up,” he says.
Several people gathered described her attackers as a group of young people.
“They were like children and s ** t,” says one man.
“Yes, a lot of kids,” one woman agrees.
“They are weird young bulls,” says another man.
Despite initial reports that he was attacked by a group of teenagers, however, police on Wednesday said the attack was believed to have taken place during a suspicious altercation.
Witnesses told police Ms Morales was in the park with an unknown man when they started arguing with another woman, who then poured flammable liquid on Morales and set her on fire.
“A girl bends over and stretches out her hand and a person catches fire,” an unidentified witness told FOX29 Philadelphia. “It was huge.”
Another witness, Noraida Nunez, told the station: “I saw the little one – it was like a small spark – and then suddenly it became ‘urea’ like someone was throwing liquid.”
Ms Nunez said she ran to help. “She was shaking and screaming,” he said. “She did not want anyone to see her face anyway because I guess her face was, you know, also burned.”
Mrs. Morales’s mother, Leah Ann Morales, confirmed to CBS News that her daughter was in the video.
“I saw the first three seconds when I knew it was her and I could not watch anymore,” he said. “You know she’s your daughter, and you know she’m burned, and then you say, ‘She needs help, can someone help her?’ And I found out on the Internet. “
Leah Ann said her daughter would live, but “will have permanent damage”.
“He must have a new face,” he said.
“I say, she will never have the face she was born with, and they said this is the hard part when she can look in the mirror and see a different person looking behind her.”
She said her daughter “never hurt anyone, only herself”.
“She’s just addicted, misled,” she said. “He went to college and just fell into that hole and he can’t climb out. “I’m sad, I’m cracked, I’m so angry.”
Police are examining the surveillance video and trying to locate eyewitnesses. They ask anyone who has information to show up.
FOX29 reported that authorities are also working to find the source of the video posted online.
“I just want to know who did this,” Leah Ann told CBS News.
“Do not you want to know who did this? Wouldn’t everyone want to know who did this? Who could do it? Do you want them to do it again? They go home and laugh, “Oh, did I get away with that?”