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Jim Hoffer
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IRVINGTON, N.J. (WABC) — Police in Irvington, New Jersey are searching for a man they say threw hot oil on his ex-wife as she slept in her bed.

There is a widespread search underway for the suspect.

It is in a first floor apartment in Irvington where Terri Thompson’s life changed forever.

She had gone to bed after refusing the sexual advances of her former husband who had recently moved back in with Thompson and her two children.

Her sister who has spoken directly with the victim describes what happened next.

“He goes to the kitchen proceeds to fill a pot with water and oil, boils it then puts on gloves, carries the pot into bedroom and pours it on her,” said Claudia Menture, the victim’s sister.

Badly burned and beaten, she was able to crawl to her neighbor’s apartment across the hall to get help.

Since the Friday attack, Thompson has been in serious condition in the critical care unit at St. Barnabas Medical Center.

“She is wrapped completely from head to arms in bandages. They said the skin was falling off her that’s how bad she was burned,” said John Menture, the victim’s brother-in-law.

Irvington Police are looking for the ex-husband, 47-year-old Byron Stokely, who stole Thompson’s car after the alleged attack.

The part-time security guard is wanted on charges of aggravated assault which the family says downplays the seriousness of the crime.

“Him throwing hot oil and water and beating her and locking her in, he left her to die,” Claudia Menture said.

Irvington Police are warning that anyone who comes into contact with the 200 pound, 5’6″, Stokely should use caution and contact them immediately.

“He is someone who is very violent, he needs to be caught, he’s very dangerous,” Claudia Menture said.

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