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North Carolina gay man set on fire by man he met at gay bar dies

North Carolina gay man set on fire by man he met at gay bar dies

Stephen Patrick White, 46, has died on Saturday afternoon in a hospital from injuries after he was found beaten and burned in a Greensboro, North Carolina hotel room last weekend.

According to media reports, White, an army veteran, has had most of both arms amputated after he was severely burned in the incident last weekend when he went to the hotel with a man he met at a gay bar.

A 26-year-old man has as been charged in the crime.

Garry Joseph Gupton, Greensboro Water Resources Department employee, was arrested by the police when they were called to scene.

White is reported to be a US Army veteran who had served in Iraq and had lost part of his leg while guarding a US base as a private contractor in Iraq 10 years ago.

He was found unconscious by police just after 4.30am after a hotel employee called to report a man screaming in the hotel, according to media reports.

Police said a fire broke out in the hotel room the men shared.

White’s long-time partner, Alex Teal, told the media that he and White had been dating since 2009 and still lived together, but ‘decided to take a break’ this summer.

‘So that night was his last night of freedom,’ Teal said as the pair has agreed to try again starting the next day.

Robert Porter, a bartender at Chemistry, told the Charlotte Observer that while White was a regular at the bar, Gupton had told him that he’d been experimenting with men since he was 19, and it had taken about a month and a half to work up the courage to enter the bar.

Police spokeswoman Susan Danielsen said there is no indication the incident was motivated by the sexuality of the victim. ‘We believe this was a consensual encounter between the two of them, and at some point Mr Gupton began acting incredibly irrational,’ she said.

The victim is believed to have been struck with a telephone, television and another small piece of furniture.

Guilford County Assistant District Attorney Howard Newman added that he expects to file arson charges as the fire appeared to be intentionally set.