Thanks to testimony on his deathbed, a boy from Texas could finally get justice after 17 years.
Robbie Middleton was just eight-years-old in 1998 when he was attacked by another boy. The bully tied Robbie at a tree, poured gasoline on him, and lit him on fire in a horrifying crime in Splendora, Texas, according to ABC.
Several years later, the perpetrator received the maximum sentence allowed — and Robbie’s family was awarded the highest damages ever imposed in the United States.
Robbie’s story begins in the state of Texas. He was an ordinary boy who went to school. But on the day of his eighth birthday, he met a monster that would completely destroy him and his family. The then 13-year-old Don Collins kidnapped Robbie, tied him to a tree, and poured gasoline on the boy before lighting him on fire. The horrible attack took place near Robbie’s home in Splendora, Texas. Robbie was on his his way to a friend’s house when he came across Don, writes Huffington Post.
99 percent of Robbie’s body was covered third degree burns. He endured more than 150 operations and spent most of his days at a rehabilitation center after his burns. But ten years after the attack, his body began to fail. Robbie received a cancer diagnosis that, according to doctors, was directly linked to his many burns. US courts ruled that his death was a murder.
Don had been suspected of the crime, but was released for lack of evidence.
But on his deathbed, the Middleton family’s lawyer took new testimony from Robbie. He confirmed that Don committed the horrible crime, with the words: “Don did it”.