A man has been arrested after he allegedly poured boiling water over his girlfriend’s son and his boyfriend as they lay asleep in bed, leaving the pair with horrific burns.
Martin Blackwell, 48, is charged with aggravated battery after police say he burned Anthony Gooden, 23, and partner Marquez Tolbert, 21, as they slept in Gooden’s mother’s apartment.
Blackwell allegedly doused the pair with boiling water at the apartment in College Park, Georgia, before telling them ‘get out of my house with all that gay’ and dragging them out of the front door.
Gooden and Tolbert were then left to go door-to-door in the neighborhood desperately looking for help, according to a GoFundMe page set up by Tolbert’s family.
Eventually a neighbor let them in and called for help and the pair were taken to hospital.
The pair suffered second and third degree burns to their backs, heads and necks, with Gooden placed in a medically-induced coma.
Meanwhile Tolbert was forced to have skin removed from his thighs to replace the lost skin on his back, and will now need to wear body compress dressings for two years.
Tolbert suffered third degree burns that stripped the skin from his back.
Tolbert was forced to have skin removed from his thighs to replace the skin he lost
Meanwhile Blackwell, who does not live at the address as he claimed but regularly visits, was arrested and booked into Fulton County Jail.
According to a police arrest report, seen by WSBTV, Blackwell was unrepentant, telling officers: ‘They’ll be all right. It was just a little hot water on them.
Blackwell is accused of boiling a pan of water and throwing it over the pair, telling Tolbert to ‘get out of my house with all that gay’
Blackwell also told officers he was disgusted by the men’s relationship, the report says.
Gooden told Celebtricity.com that his mother had only recently started dating Blackwell, and it appeared as though the pair were getting along well.
He said that in the early hours of February 12 he and Tolbert had returned from their job in a warehouse before falling asleep on a mattress on the floor of his mother’s front room.
Several hours later, as they were sleeping, Blackwell allegedly filled a pot with water, brought it to a boil, and then emptied it over the pair.
Tolbert said: ‘We woke up to boiling hot water. I started screaming uncontrollably and I was pulled out of the house.
‘We ran to the neighbors and called the police. We were just burning. My body was just stinging. It was like a really, really severe kind of stinging. I could hardly think straight.’
Speaking to Channel 2 News, he tearfully added: ‘The pain doesn’t let you sleep. It’s just excruciating, 24 hours a day, and it doesn’t go anywhere. It doesn’t dial down. It’s just there.’
Tolbert said all he remembers is screaming in pain as Blackwell lifted him out of bed and threw him out the front door, forcing him and Gooden to go door-to-door looking for help.
Tolbert says there is no doubt in his mind that the attack was a hate crime, but those charges do not exist in Georgia, so Blackwell instead faces aggravated battery offences
Asked whether he believes the attack constitutes a hate crime, Tolbert said: ‘Why else would you pour boiling hot water on somebody? Where was your head at? Why would you do this?’
An Atlanta Police Department LGBT liaison assisted in the case to make sure Blackwell did not make bond, police said.
While hate crime charges do not exist in the state of Gerogia, the liaison said federal hate crimes could be levied against Blackwell, with a hearing scheduled to address that.
Tolbert will now have to wear compression dressings and avoid direct sunlight for two years.