Man gets low bond after being charged with setting pregnant girlfriend on fire, shelter says cases up

A 41-year-old man who was charged with setting his pregnant girlfriend on fire was given a bond so low that he could be out of jail for as little as $5,000.

Police said Devonne Marsh got into an argument with his girlfriend at their Detroit home off Packard and Outer Drive last Friday, Jan. 14, and he doused her with lighter fluid before setting her on fire.

The mom-to-be is 6-and-a-half months pregnant with twins.

"How do you do this to another human being? I can’t - it’s unimaginable," said Detroit Police Commander Michael McGinnis. "Just incredibly traumatic injuries. I did see pictures and I just...the pain she must be suffering, I can’t imagine."

The woman has third-degree burns on 60% of her body and is in critical condition. It's not yet known if her babies will survive.

At first, she was too scared to come forward. According to Heaven of Oakland County CEO Aimee Nimeh, that's common. Haven offers emergency services for domestic violence victims and Nimeh said they're busier than ever.

"Fear is part of the relationship and so absolutely there is fear of retaliation," Nimeh said."It does feel like in the last several months that demand has come in like tidal wave here.

One of their services is helping to navigate the legal system. In this case, Marsh has a lengthy and violent criminal past. He's a parole absconder with past charges including drugs, guns, and assault.

Despite that, Marsh was given a low bond. Nimeh said this is fairly common and that causes fear that the accused will retaliate.

"The court system can be very overwhelming the process can be complicated," she said. "It’s not just that court is a little scary it's also that what happens next with that assailant that might be coming out that might be walking free. How do you stay safe in that situation."

A spokeswoman from the Wayne County Prosecutor's Office said they don't think bond is adequate for Marsh and are filing a motion to try to get it raised next week in court.