A Hopkins man who thought his girlfriend was communicating with his brother on social media burned her face, body and genitals with a hot curling iron, according to charges.
Dequarn M. Bell, 24, was initially charged in the case last year but was recently indicted by a grand jury on more serious counts: one count each of first-degree criminal sexual conduct, first-degree assault and soliciting prostitution.
Bell is accused of burning the woman 14 times all over her body, causing "serious disfigurement."
According to the complaint: Hopkins police were called to a gas station on Sept. 9 on a domestic assault. The victim told police that Bell assaulted her when she returned home from a trip at the end of July.
Bell accused the woman of using the social media app Snapchat to talk with his brother. He heated a curling iron and assaulted her in his apartment in the 900 block of S. 9th Avenue. A burn on her face measured 2 inches wide and 3 inches long.
Bell also took her phone and keys, and she was unable to leave the apartment for weeks until she fled on foot, the charges said.
When she went to identify the curling iron police found in the apartment, she broke down in sobs, telling police for the first time that Bell had used it to sexually assault her, according to the complaint.
Bell's criminal record includes multiple convictions for domestic assault and violating a domestic assault no-contact order. He is in custody at the Hennepin County jail and is being held on $2 million bail.