Monday, May 20 2013 2:57 AM EDT2013-05-20 06:57:27 GMT
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WINNSBORO, LA (KSLA) -
Authorities say the woman who told police she had been attacked and set on fire in a Winnsboro city park made it all up.
20-year-old Sharmeka Moffitt remains in critical condition in the Regional Burn Center at LSU Medical Center in Shreveport, where she is believed to have undergone surgery Tuesday.
Winnsboro Police Chief Lester Thomas said Tuesday afternoon that authorities linked Moffitt's fingerprints to a lighter and a bottle of lighter fluid found at the scene.
"The investigation (of) Ms Moffitt has revealed that this was not an attack but a self-inflicted incident that happened to her," said Chief Thomas.
When Chief Thomas was asked about a motive, he said that remains unknown.
The State Police will turn their evidence over the Franklin Parish District Attorney's office, who would be the one to file charges in the case.
Many Winnsboro residents came to hear what Chief Thomas had to say, and were visibly upset when they learned what police had discovered.
Moffitt's family released a statement shortly after the news conference ended.
"Our family is devastated to learn the circumstances surrounding our daughter's injuries. While this was not the resolution we had expected, it is a resolution, and we appreciate the thorough investigation by the local and state police as well as federal agencies.
We are sincerely sorry for any problems this may have caused and wish to express our appreciation for the outpouring of love, prayers and support we have received from friends, acquaintances, church organizations and government officials.
Over the coming days and weeks, our focus will be on Sharmeka and her recovery."