KKK Burn Victim Sharmeka Moffitt Lied, Police Say
Police investigators say that a woman who claimed that members of the KKK kidnapped her and set her on fire in a Louisiana town, which caused a national uproar, made up the entire story to explain her burns.
Sharmeka Moffitt set herself on fire, which burned over 90 percent of her body and left her in critical condition at the Louisiana State University-Shreveport hospital, forensic investigators state.
On Sunday at 8 p.m., Sharmeka Moffitt called 911 from a walking trail in Winnsboro, La., and told authorities she had been doused in flammable liquid by three men wearing white hoodies. She suffered extensive burns on more than half her body and was taken to the LSU Health Science Center in Shreveport for treatment, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.
Authorities, including the FBI, began to unravel Moffitt’s story immediately based on the evidence collected.
“The evidence does not support the statement that she was attacked by three males,” said Louisiana State Police spokeswoman Lt. Julie Lewis.
Lewis said Moffitt’s fingerprints were found on a lighter and lighter fluid recovered from the scene. Investigators also believe Moffitt used toothpaste to draw the Ku Klux Klan initials and racial slur on her vehicle. DNA evidence also points to Moffitt, Lewis said.
Investigators, however, have not been able to interview Moffitt because she remains in critical condition. Without speaking to her, it remains unclear why she might set herself on fire, Lewis offered.
Police are handing the case over to the Franklin Parish District Attorney’s Office, which will decide whether to file charges against Moffitt, she said.
“I feel a hurt for the victim,” Winnsboro Police Chief Lester Thomas Lester Thomas told a news conference Tuesday.
“Nobody knows, it could be you, it could be me, it could be one of our family members struggling like this,” added Franklin Parish Sheriff Kevin Kobb.
Several law enforcement agencies, including the FBI, began looking into the alleged attack as a possible hate crime. If this new revelation turns out to be true, then these same agencies will be looking to file charges against here.