Hospital worker accused of setting supervisor on fire

FORT LEAVENWORTH, Kansas — A hospital employee was set on fire by a coworker who wanted to kill her, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office of the District of Kansas.

Clifford Currie, 54, of Leavenworth, Kansas, is accused of assaulting his supervisor, 1st Lt. Katie Blanchard at Munson Army Health Center on Sept. 7. Currie threw gasoline or some other inflammable liquid on Blanchard, lit her on fire and assaulted her with a straight razor edge, according to a news release from the U.S. Attorney's Office.

The Army Times reports that after Currie lit Blanchard on fire, he held his foot on her throat and tried to stab her with a scissors.

The first witness on the scene heard a loud scream and saw Blanchard "on fire from the chest up." The witness was injured when trying to stop Currie from further assault on the victim.

Several witnesses on scene said that Blanchard had always been uncomfortable with Currie and asked for another employee to be with her when she counseled Currie, who had been resistant to supervision, according to the Army Times report.

Blanchard is currently being treated for her injuries. A GoFundMe page was created for child care, food, lodging and other needs. According to the page, Blanchard will most likely be in the hospital or rehab for the next year for treatment of her third- and fourth-degree burns.

Currie has been charged with one count of assault with intent to commit murder. If convicted, he faces a penalty of 20 years in federal prison and a fine up to $250,000.

The FBI and the U.S. Military Police are investigating the incident.

Follow Madeline Zukowski on Twitter: @madszuko


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