Disabled US boy deliberately set on fire, family claims

Kayden Culp (YouCaring)
Kayden Culp (YouCaring)

A young boy in the United States has severe burns covering a fifth of his body after being set on fire.

Ten-year-old Kayden Culp is now in a medically-induced coma and his family say they believe it was a planned attack.

Kerville Fire Chief Dannie Smith told local media a fire was lit inside a vacant shed, and an accelerant was added to fuel the flames on Sunday (local time).

Four boys were involved and one of them is in police custody charged with first-degree arson.

While the investigation is ongoing, Mr Smith said on Thursday there was no indication anyone intended to hurt Kayden.

Disabled US boy deliberately set on fire, family claims


But that's not what Kayden's family say happened.

His aunt, Tanya Casper, told CBS-affiliate KENS her nephew was lured into an open field, doused in gasoline by one boy and set on fire by another.

"He wore a hearing aid, talked with a lisp… I mean, he was challenged from the get-go," she told KENS.

"The kids are letting everyone know this was planned."

She said the new challenge will be "overwhelming" for Kayden.

His family have started a YouCaring campaign, and they say Kayden is now fighting infection and pneumonia.