Yakima woman doused in chemicals, set on fire

YAKIMA, Wash. -- A Yakima woman was hospitalized in Seattle after being set on fire early this morning. Police say a man who was inside her home is now in custody. Investigators say he doused her with some kind of chemical before lighting the match. KIMA spoke with neighbors who heard screams coming from the place.

A neighbor woke up to shouts from two men fighting. KIMA is calling her Samantha because she doesn't want to be identified. She called 911.

"I kind of did get scared because of the altercation that I heard earlier, and I was just wondering what happened in there," Samantha said.

When police got to the public housing complex on South 12th Avenue, one of the apartments was in flames. What they found inside looked worse: Elva Garza Grant was badly burned.

From her home, Elva was rushed to a local hospital and then transferred to Seattle's Harborview Medical Center. A relative told KIMA over a quarter of her body is covered in burns.

Police say Elva was the victim of a second argument involving one of the men from the earlier scuffle. Investigators say Stuart Bachman attacked her and poured some kind of an accelerant on her before starting the fire.

Bachman took off, but an officer arrested the suspect a few hours later.

Amber Colter lives next door.

"It probably worries me a lot, because I have two younger children living here and something like that happening," said Colter. "Nobody wants to live, you know, somewhere where things like that happen."

Before this happened, Samantha says there were warning signs.

"She would bring a lot of people here that would start problems, and I kind of figured something bad would happen."

As for Elva, the latest signs are positive. Relatives are being told by her doctors she should survive and could be transferred back to Yakima in a couple of days.

Bachman is expected to appear in court tomorrow on charges of arson, assault and harassment. Besides the injuries to Elva Grant, police say her dog was killed. No one else at the apartment complex was hurt.