Shriya Patel: Husband She Was Accused of Torching in April Has Died
Bimal Patel, the Austin man whose wife allegedly doused him in gasoline and set him on fire after promising him a romantic massage back in April, has died. Ever since the April 17 incident, Patel, 29, had been in a burns unit at San Antonio Military Medical Center. Doctors there confirmed that he passed away Saturday.
Patel's wife, Shriya Biman Patel, remains in Travis County Jail, where she is being held in lieu of $1,000,000 bail. Her current charges -- arson and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon -- are expected to be upgraded to murder soon.
According to earlier reports, Shriya came to America from Dubai only one week before the incident. Her husband had been in Austin for some time before. Police said at the time that Shriya lured him into a bathtub, promising a candlelit, hot oil massage. Instead she allegedly poured gasoline on him and set him on fire with the candles.
Police said that the planning that went into the attack was singularly chilling.
They claimed that 25-year-old Shriya disabled both the sprinklers and the smoke alarm in the apartment, and that she locked him in the bathroom after setting him on fire.
"Why did she burn me?" Bimal Patel reportedly cried as he was being loaded aboard a medical chopper. "Why did she burn me? All I was trying to do was love her."
Shriya claimed that Bimal set himself on fire, but a Walmart security tape reportedly shows her purchasing some of the items used in the attack.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Houston Press' biggest stories.