Teen Sets Bus Passenger's Hair on Fire in Shocking Video

Police in San Francisco have asked for the public's help, after releasing shocking footage of a teenager setting fire to a woman's hair while she sits on a bus.

In the footage, which was filmed on a 5 Fulton Street Muni bus in San Francisco, California, at around 2:25 p.m. on Wednesday, a boy dressed all in red, who the authorities believe is a teenager, walked behind a woman and sat in a seat behind her.

The suspect held up a lighter to the woman's hair for several seconds, then momentarily took it away to check it was working, before continuing, according to the footage released by the San Francisco Police Department.

The woman's hair was then set on fire, before the suspect and two friends left the bus, the police confirmed in a statement accompanying the footage. Other passengers assisted the woman but left the scene, along with the victim, before the police arrived.

The authorities were alerted to the incident by the bus driver, who informed them that the unnamed woman had her hair set on fire by a suspect sitting at the back of the bus. The department said that both the victim and suspect boarded the bus at McAllister and Laguna Streets.

The department released footage of the incident and asked for help from the public to identify the suspect, but the appeal confused some social media users as all of the suspect's faces were blurred in the shared clip.

Replying to the department's tweet, one user wrote: "You want us to help you yet blur out the thug's face!," while another said: "Maybe if you don't blur out the face it'll be easier for the public to help identify this person."

However, police spokesperson Adam Lobsinger told SFGate that the initial focus of the investigation is to find the victim so that they can start to build a case.

"Without the victim, when we catch the suspects, it's harder to do anything," Lobsinger said. "We are still looking for the suspects."

The police did not reveal how badly injured the woman was in the attack, but described her as a "female of Filipino or Latin descent, between 50 and 60 years of age with dark hair and eyeglasses."

Investigators have asked the victim to come forward to offer a statement about the incident. The SFPD Special Investigations Detail has been assigned to the case.

Newsweek has contacted the San Francisco Police Department for comment

San Francisco bus hair set on fire
An image released by the San Francisco Police Department. Police in San Francisco have asked for the public’s help, after releasing shocking footage of a teenager setting fire to a woman’s hair on a bus in the city. San Francisco Police Department