Sharmeka Moffit, a 20 year old Louisiana woman who told the police three men in hoodies set her on fire and wrote racial slurs on her car, made up the whole story, according to police. In fact, police believe that she did it to herself. Her motives are unclear.
The story that Moffitt told the police was that she had parked her car by a walking trail in Winnsboro, Louisiana by Civitan Park. She said she was approached by three men wearing white hoodies who then lit her on fire. She was able to extinguish the flames herself. Police who arrived at the scene found the words KKK on her car as well as the N-word.
Now police are describing the incident, which had all the makings of a heinous hate crime, as a “self-inflicted situation”.
Louisiana State Police Capt. Doug Cain told NBC News:
“In less than 24 hours, the state crime lab was able to analyze the evidence found at the scene, including a cigarette lighter, lighter fluid and also the hood of the car that had a paste-like substance spread across it, and it identified [Moffitt’s] fingerprints as well as some female DNA. With this evidence, investigators were able to determine that she was alone in the park that night and made up the story.”
The Louisiana State Police, the Winnsboro Police Department, the Franklin Parish Sheriff’s Department and the FBI al took part in this bizarre investigation. The consortium of law enforcement agencies announced their findings at a press conference on Tuesday evening.
Franklin Parish Sheriff Kevin Cobb said:
“This has been a very disturbing case for all involved. All of the evidence indicates this was a self-inflicted situation.”
Moffit is currently in the hospital undergoing surgery to treat the burns she sustained, which cover 60 percent of her whole body. Moffitt is in critical condition in the burn unit at Louisiana State University in Shreveport, the Shreveport Times reported.
Police Chief Cain said:
“We certainly hope to speak with her about it, but her health comes first.”
Even after police released the results of their investigation more than 100 people arrived at Civitan Park to offer support to Moffitt and her family.
The Moffitt family said in a statement to the press:
“Our family is devastated to learn the circumstances surrounding our daughter’s injuries. While this was not the resolution we had expected, it is a resolution, and we appreciate the thorough investigation by the local and state police, as well as federal agencies. We are sincerely sorry for any problems this may have caused and wish to express our appreciation for the outpouring of love, prayers and support we have received from friends, acquaintances, church organizations and government officials.”