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Police: 14-Year-Old Boy Set Man on Fire in Annandale

The boy was part of a group of boys that attacked the man, police say

A 14-year-old boy set a man on fire and tried to rob him Sunday in Northern Virginia, police say.

The boy, whose name police did not release, was part of a group of boys that attacked the man, Fairfax County police said Monday. The man had been sleeping outside an apartment building in Annandale. 

The boy was charged with malicious wounding and attempted robbery, and taken to the Fairfax County Juvenile Detention Center.

Police were called to the 4500 block of Commons Drive about 2:45 p.m. Sunday. A witness told police that several people had assaulted a man and tried to set him on fire.

When officers arrived, they chased the boys and were able to detain two of them.

They found a man with injuries to his upper body and burns on his clothing and backpack. Medics took him to a hospital for non-life-threatening injuries.

According to the preliminary investigation, the boys had planned to rob the man. He awoke to the boys setting his backpack on fire, police said.

The two boys who police detained were released to their parents, per standard procedure. 

Neighbor Paul Choi said he was on edge. He and his wife are even thinking of moving. 

"No more safety in this area," he said. 

Investigators are working to identify the other suspects. They did not release descriptions of the boys. 

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