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Steven Iorio, Heidelberg, Pennsylvania Man, Set On Fire By 'Friends' For Being Gay

Gay Man Set On Fire

First Posted: 10/21/11 01:30 PM ET Updated: 10/21/11 01:30 PM ET

A man claims his leg was set on fire by two former friends because he is gay, reports WXPI.

Steven Iorio told Channel 11 that he passed out on a couch after a night of drinking. He woke up at 3am to find his leg was on fire.

An eyewitness told police that Brandon Washington and David Blair poured a bottle of Barcadi on Iorio's leg and then set it on fire.

Tina Cook, a friend of Iorio's who took him to the hospital following the incident, says that Washington and Blair also "wrote disturbing things on his pants and drew on his face."

Heidelberg police have charged Washington and Blair with aggravated assault and ethnic intimidation. Channel 11 notes that they were not arrested but will receive a summons in the mail.

When WXPI tried to get a comment from the city's chief of police, a reporter was told that he was "too busy to talk."

A video interview with Iorio, which includes graphic images of his injuries, is available for viewing here.

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Filed by Noah Michelson  |