MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- Prosecutors said a Milwaukee man set the mother of his children on fire “because she wouldn’t pay her taxes and was buying other stuff.”
After setting Savannah Bailey ablaze on Valentine’s Day, causing life-threatening injuries, a criminal complaint said Javaunte Jefferson drove away, leaving Bailey and the children outside in subzero temperatures.
Jefferson, 28, of Milwaukee faces six felonies: Attempted first-degree intentional homicide, domestic abuse assessments; first-degree reckless injury, domestic abuse assessments; arson of building; and first-degree recklessly endangering safety -- three counts.
According to the complaint, police responded to an apartment building near 8th Street and Messmer Street around 3:30 a.m. on Friday, Feb. 14, where they found Savannah Bailey with life-threatening burns covering 60 percent of her body, most of them third-degree burns.
She told investigators she was sleeping in her bed when Jefferson “just got to pouring gasoline on me.” She said she tried to use snow to extinguish the fire, as Jefferson drove off, leaving Bailey and their kids outside.
The complaint said Jefferson’s 8-year-old brother told police after the fire, Jefferson’s mother called Jefferson and said, “Don’t lie to me, Javaunte.” The 8-year-old said Jefferson indicated he “killed (Bailey) because she wouldn’t pay her taxes, and was buying other stuff.”