A woman who was raped and burned alive has died. According to Yahoo! News, the 36-year-old Kansas woman passed away on Saturday after she was sexually assaulted and then set on fire on November 14. She was found by firefighters in a park in Wichita with severe burns on more than half of her body. Emergency crews had been called to the park after a “grass fire” broke out, but were surprised to find the body of a woman amid the flames. Despite being alive when she was transported to a nearby hospital, her injuries were very serious. She was listed in “critical condition.” It’s unknown if she was conscious.
Forensic evidence in the case led police to Cornell McNeal, who was arrested and charged in the brutal attack.
“Cornell A. McNeal, 26, of Wichita, had been charged Friday with attempted capital murder and rape in the attack, as well as with two counts of arson stemming from fires that were set that day in the park and at a garage. Bond was set at $250,000,” reports Yahoo! News. It is unknown if McNeal has obtained an attorney.
Since the woman who was raped and burned died from her injuries, additional charges against McNeal will likely be filed. According to the Associated Press, Wichita Police Chief Nelson Mosley said that it was unknown if, or how, McNeal knew the victim. Her name has not been released.
“Mosley said ‘this tragic and horrendous incident’ was affecting the entire community. He said the local police and fire departments, along with forensic experts, were still investigating. He said tips were coming in to police, but he declined to discuss specifics, saying it could jeopardize the case,” reports the Associated Press.
Many are relieved to hear that police have made an arrest in this case. Sometimes incidents like this one can take years to solve. For instance, a woman named Paige Birgfeld was killed back in 2007, and a suspect was just arrested this week. As previously reported by the Inquisitr, Lester Ralph Jones, 63, was arrested on Friday morning after police felt that they have enough evidence to take him into custody. Birgfeld, 34, was running a “secret” escort service and Jones was one of her clients. She disappeared, and her body was found years later, but Jones was a suspect from the start. Now, her family and friends hope that justice will be served
Police are still investigating the case of the woman who died after being raped and burned alive. McNeal does not have a scheduled court date yet, but many are hoping for justice in this case as well.
[Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons]