SAVANNAH, Mo. — A teenager appeared in court Monday for allegedly pouring gasoline on a child and then setting that child on fire.
The child sustained first- and second-degree burns on his face, right arm and in his nose and throat on April 19. The child was transferred from Heartland Regional Medical Center to the Kansas University Hospital burn center for treatment.
The state charged Joseph Gardner, 17, with first-degree assault for the alleged burning. Court records alleged that the teenager threatened to hit the child in the face unless he let Mr. Gardner pour the gasoline. Mr. Gardner allegedly threatened to murder the child and his family if he told anyone about his bullying.
According to a probable cause statement filed by Tommy Hudson, an Andrew County sheriff’s deputy, after allegedly setting the child on fire, the defendant stood there and laughed.
Associate Circuit Judge Mike Ordnung set bond for the defendant at $150,000 and supplied paperwork for the defendant to file for a public defender.
Despite being advised that anything he said could and would be used against him, Mr. Gardner tried to explain his actions to the judge. Mr. Ordnung repeatedly ordered the defendant to be quiet.
Mr. Ordnung ordered deputies to return Mr. Gardner to court in May. The defendant remains in the Andrew County Jail in lieu of posting a bond.
Details on the age of the child and the connection to Mr. Gardner were not disclosed.
Missouri teen charged with pouring gasoline on 13-year-old, setting the child on fire
April 24, 12:08 PM
SAVANNAH, Mo. — A Missouri teenager accused of pouring gasoline on a 13-year-old and setting the child on fire has been charged with first-degree assault.
Seventeen-year-old Joseph D. Gardner was charged Monday in Andrew County court. The St. Joseph News-Press reports (http://bit.ly/JDaIEu) the 13-year-old suffered first- and second-degree burns on his face, right arm and in his nose and throat.
The probable cause statement says Gardner threatened to murder the child and his family if he told anyone about the April 15 incident. The statement says after igniting the 13-year-old, Gardner stood there and laughed.
Gardner has asked for a public defender. Calls to an address listed for Gardner weren’t immediately returned Tuesday.