Winston Ortiz, an 18-year-old, was set on fire before being stabbed multiple times by an unidentified man, in a Bronx apartment building on Wednesday afternoon. The victim was rushed to Harlem Hospital where his condition is described as critical. An investigation is being conducted to identify the attacker and the motive behind the grisly incident.
The attack comes two days after cops shot two men at the corner outside the same apartment building. The victims, shot multiple times by the cops, were later taken to Lincoln Hospital.
Attacker and Victim Knew Each Other
According to NBC New York, the incident took place on the fifth floor of the building. The surveillance footage accessed by the cops reveals that the attacker arrived in the building nearly 10 minutes before the victim.
Prior to the attack, the victim, who wasn't staying in the apartment building, entered into an argument with the assailant. Enraged, the suspect stabbed the victim three times before pouring liquid accelerant and setting him on fire. The containers used by the arsonist to hold the liquid accelerant will be examined by the arson and explosive squad.
The NYPD officials revealed that upon hearing the screams of the victim, the neighbours rushed out and poured water on him. Ortiz was found barely conscious with extensive burns on his body and stab wounds to his chest, by the cops after they arrived at the scene, reported the outlet.
Screaming Teenager Alerted Neighbors
In its report the New York Post stated that screams from a teenage girl who was standing in the hallway alerted a 34-year-old woman staying in the apartment building. Speaking to the outlet, the woman said: "I step outside. I saw flames. I thought her apartment was on fire. And when I go over there, I saw a guy in flames all over his body."
It was then the woman along with another resident, staying on the sixth floor, poured buckets of water on the burning teenager. Stating that the incident has left her scared, the woman, who stays with her daughters, said that it was really concerning.
"Unfortunately in the neighborhood we feel like we're not safe. There was a shooting yesterday around the corner. We may need to have some police around the area," the woman told the outlet.