Thursday, March 12, 2009
Burning incident leads to aggravated assault charge
By SUE WATSON
Paramedics and sheriff’s deputies were called to 3960 Higdon Road last week to provide medical assistance to two people with burns, according to county fire investigator Tracy Jeffries.
Jeffries said the call came in at 3:50 p.m. Wednesday, March 4.
A female at the residence had extensive burns and was airlifted to the Memphis Med, he said.
A male present at the scene had burns to the hands and was transported by ambulance to The Med, he said.
Sheriff Kenny Dickerson said the victim was Betty Boyd, 54, of the Higdon Road residence, who investigators believe was drinking with Thames Richards, 53, of 1965 Highway 7 South, before the incident took place.
“We believe the two had been drinking and the two had words,” Dickerson said. “We believe Richards took kerosene from a lamp and poured it on her and set her fire.”
Richards turned himself in to authorities at the jail following his release from a Memphis hospital where he was treated for burns to the hands, Dickerson said. He was was charged with aggravated assault, placed under $50,000 bond and remained in jail Tuesday, according to the sheriff.
Boyd remained in critical condition Tuesday, Dickerson said.
A search warrant was executed to the residence on Higdon Road where items were recovered, and witnesses were interviewed subsequent to the incident. Dickerson, Jeffries and investigator Kelly McMillan are investigating the case.
First responders were called to the scene of another structure fire at 12:21 a.m. Wednesday night, March 4, at 408 Stinson Road, he said.
Holly Springs Fire Department, Potts Camp Fire Department and Waterford Fire Department sent firefighting crews to the scene – a house that was totally involved, he said, when firefighters arrived.
The vacant house had been illegally occupied and witnesses thought the fire had been caused by attempts to light a kerosene heater, Jeffries said.
Names in both incidents described above are being withheld pending further investigation, Jeffries said.
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