Tow truck driver set on fire in robbery try

April 23, 2008|By Richard Irwin

The owner of a towing company remains hospitalized after he was set on fire early yesterday during an attempted robbery by two men who flagged him down on the Baltimore Beltway in Rosedale, state police said.

No arrests had been made.

From his bed at an undisclosed hospital, the victim, whose name was not revealed, told police that he was driving his tow truck north on the Beltway and nearing U.S. 40, between Rosedale and Rossville, about 1 a.m. when he saw two men standing on the shoulder next to a red Ford Escort, waving for him to stop.

The driver told police he pulled over and was standing outside his truck when one of the men asked how much he would charge to tow their disabled car. He said he would charge $50, he told police.

When the men asked him how much money he had on him, he told them about $65, police said. With that, he said, one of the men doused him with a flammable liquid and the other man threw a lighted cigarette on him, which ignited the liquid.

While the tow truck driver tried to extinguish the flames to his clothing, arms, hands and part of his face, the two men drove off in their car without robbing him, police said.

Someone called 911 and the tow truck driver was taken by ambulance to the hospital, where he was interviewed by police.

Anyone with information leading to the identities of the two men is urged to call state police at 410-686-3101.

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