When Poured on Boy.
Three Lads Attack Detroit Youngster in Alley and Endeavor to Kill Him
Special Dispatch to the Enquirer
Detroit, Mich., Aug 16. – The police are investigating a report made by a boy , who is recovering from serious burns in Receiving hospital, that he was attacked by three older boys in an alley, doused with kerosene and set afire.
The boy is Joseph McAdoo, 10 years old. He did not give the names of the three who he said attacked him, or tell the cause of the attack. He said however, that two of the boys held him while a third poured kerosene on his face and ignited it with a match. The alley is behind his home.
Joseph was seen running with his head on fire toward his home, and a neighbor called Dr. Albert B. Cleage, after extinguishing the flames.
The boy will recover, although his face, head, neck, shoulders and one hand were injured painfully.
It was first feared Joseph might lose the use of his eyes.
Joseph told detectives of Scotten Station who were assigned to the case today that he was looking for wooden boxes in the alley when the attack took place. He gave the officers a description of the three.
BOY, 10 BURNED, ACCUSES OTHERS
Police Doubt Story Oil Was Poured on Victim.
Receiving hospital physicians Thursday were skeptical regarding the story told by 10-year-old Joseph McAdoo, 5424 McKinley avenue, suffering burns about the neck and shoulders, who, after being brought to the hospital, Tuesday, said that three boys whom he met in an alley in the rear of his home drenched his clothing with kerosene and set it afire.
Police of Vinewood station said Thursday that no investigation of the boys story is being made.
McAdoo, a Negro lad gave questioners at the hospital a description of the alleged assailants but furnished no details by which they could be located in the neighborhood of his home.
Mrs. Lucy McAdoo, the boy’s mother, was away from home at the time her son suffered the burns. A neighbor summoned a doctor, who called an ambulance and had the boy removed to Receiving hospital.
Joseph Youles McAdoo was the oldest of nine children. In the 1920 census (three years before this incident) he was seven years old and attended school. There were three younger children ages five, almost two and 3 months . The family lived in a rented house in Hamtramck, Wayne County, Michigan, a small city surrounded by Detroit. Joseph’s father worked as a laborer in a can factory. His mother did not work outside of the home in 1920. The baby of three months died six months later of pneumonia. There were eventually nine children in the family.
Joseph had two years of high school before he began to work for a grocer. He eventually became a butcher. Over the years he was married and divorced several times. There were two step children.
On his WWII draft card, he was described as 5 feet 7 inches tall and weighing 140 pounds, with a dark complexion, brown eyes and black hair. His only feature that they mentioned was “high cheek bones.”There was no mention of any scars from the burns in his childhood.
On October 18, 1987 Joseh MacAdoo died in Detroit, Michigan. His death certificate was not available online so I do not know what he died of. He was 75 years old.