On Wednesday (June 24), a Black woman in Madison, Wisconsin reportedly suffered third-degree burns after four white men threw lighter fluid and a lighter at her face while she was in her car. Speaking with Madison 365, 18-year-old EMT Althea Bernstein said the assailants yelled a racial slur at her before the attack.
“I was listening to some music at a stoplight and then all of a sudden I heard someone yell the N-word really loud,” she told the outlet. “I turned my head to look and somebody’s throwing lighter fluid on me. And then they threw a lighter at me, and my neck caught on fire and I tried to put it out, but I brushed it up onto my face. I got it out and then I just blasted through the red light… I just felt like I needed to get away. So I drove through the red light and just kept driving until I got to my brother’s [home].”
According to the outlet, Bernstein’s mother drove her to the hospital later that day, where the hospital staff identified the liquid on her face and neck as lighter fluid. A police incident report says the men used a spray bottle to spray the lighter fluid onto Bernstein’s face.
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