Woman who survived burns so severe she was in coma testifies in trial of her ex-boyfriend


BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — The man accused of lighting his ex- on fire outside the Tonawanda eatery where she worked testified that he intended to kill himself by self-immolation, an idea he came up with to make her feel bad, and also said that he didn’t know how exactly she caught fire.

Jonathon White allegedly set Jessica Cameron on fire outside the Tim Horton’s on Niagara Street in December of 2018. Prosecutors allege he poured gasoline on her and intentionally set her on fire.

Before he took the stand Thursday, Cameron testified and said that White voiced suicidal thoughts days before the fire.

White allegedly lured Cameron outside during her shift working at Tim Horton’s.

Cameron endured a grueling recovery at a hospital burn unit. A nurse testified 30 to 40 percent of her body was burned, with some of the damage 3rd and 4th degree burns. She said Cameron was in a medically-induced coma for about a month after.

After the prosecution rested, White was called to the stand. He outlined his shared past with Cameron. They are the parents of three children, and were together for seven and a half years, but prosecutors say she separated from him before this incident.

White testified that the bottle was an apple juice container with gasoline inside that was supposed to be discarded.

White said as they began talking near the dumpsters, he pulled the bottle and a lighter from his pocket and began pouring gasoline on himself. He said the bottle wasn’t very full. That’s when he said the two began physically struggling, and a fire began.

White testified that he doesn’t know how Cameron caught fire, only that he tried to help her once he realized she was.

Both the prosecution and defense rested their cases.

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