Spurned boyfriend ‘burns student ex-girlfriend alive’ as passers-by ignored pleas

A Rome university student was burned alive by her ex-boyfriend after she left him, authorities said Monday. Sara Di Pietrantonio, 22, died before dawn Sunday after Vincenzo Paduano, 27, first set her car on fire, prosecutor Maria Monteleone told reporters. He then chased her about 500 metres as she tried to flee, setting her ablaze when he caught up with her, authorities said. Investigators said her attacker used a cigarette lighter to set Di Pietrantonio’s face on fire after dousing her with alcohol.

I can say that in 25 years in this work I have never seen something so atrocious.

Luigi Silipo, the lead police official

Paduano was being held for investigation of premeditated murder, Monteleone said. The suspect first denied killing the woman, but after eight hours of interrogation, confessed to killing her, lead police investigator Luigi Silipo said. “He couldn’t accept the fact he was left” by her when she ended the relationship ended, Silipo said. Investigators said the man, a security guard who had dated the victim for two years, tailed her car and at a certain point along a street on Rome’s outskirts forced it to pull over before he killed her. A surveillance camera in the area captured some of the events, including cars that apparently passed by while the woman screamed in vain for help.