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Motorist Sets Fire to Man Who Helped Him

<i> Associated Press</i>

A Good Samaritan said he was tied up, doused with gasoline and set afire by a motorist he tried to help in a convenience store parking lot, police said Wednesday.

Steven Fortner, 27, of Moreno Valley was in serious but stable condition at San Bernardino County Medical Center on Wednesday with second- and third-degree burns over 50% of his body, a nursing supervisor said.

There were no arrests, said Moreno Valley Police Sgt. Erick Higgins.

Fortner told police he had stopped to help a man working on a disabled car early Tuesday when the man got into an argument with his female companion. According to Fortner’s account, the woman stalked off.

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The man became angry with Fortner, drew a handgun and tied him up with an elastic cord. The man poured a gallon of gasoline on Fortner, set him afire and fled in a car, police said.

Fortner was able to walk to the convenience store to summon police. Officers found Fortner with burns on his hands, waist, legs and back. Much of his clothing had been burned off.


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