Leigh Ann Sepelyak apparently had a change of heart after dousing her boyfriend with gasoline and lighting him on fire, so police said the 38-year-old decided to put out the blaze with the only liquid within reach — a bucket filled with urine.
The bizarre incident happened in Pittsburgh last week when police said Sepelyak decided to cover her sleeping boyfriend with gasoline and then throw a cigarette on him to ignite a blaze. After the man, Grady Spencer III, started screaming, and Sepelyak’s parents came rushing in to help.
Together, the woman and her parents tried to put out the flames, but the only thing nearby was a bucket that the couple had been using as a toilet. According to WDEL, the couple had been urinating in the buckets so they did not disturb Sepelyak’s parents.
“The parents, when they heard screaming and smelled the smoke, helped put him out — I think with the same urine — and went to the hospital,” Penn Hills police Chief Howard Burton told TribLive Pittsburgh.
Police said the woman’s parents took Spencer to the hospital but never actually called the police about the alleged assault. It was the hospital staff that notified authorities of the bizarre incident, and Sepelyak was arrested.
The incident took place after the couple had gotten into a fight, police said. Burton said police suspected immediately that the incident was more than an accident, as it happened at 4:30 a.m. and the gasoline had to be carried to where the man was sleeping.
Spencer was admitted for treatment after being taken to the hospital by Sepelyak’s parents, the New York Post reported. He reportedly suffered burns across 25 to 35 percent of his body but was expected to survive the injuries.
“I’m sure it was more than first-(degree burns),” Burton said.
The strange story made headlines across the country this week, including one of the most-read stories on the New York Post. News outlets around Pittsburgh noted that the family’s home where the incident took place was surrounded by garbage, and indications are that the couple may have been living in squalor.
After the man was burned with gasoline — and the flames then put out with buckets of urine — police arrested Leigh Ann Sepelyak and charged her with arson and attempted murder. She is being held without bail, TribLive reported.
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