Police in Des Moines, Iowa responded to reports of screams coming from an apartment only to find its occupant tied to a pole, with numbers and letters carved into his chest.
The 24-year-old victim told police that two men had knocked on his door around 8 p.m. Sunday evening. When he opened the door, the men forced their way inside and secured the victim to a pole separating his kitchen from living room.
The men covered the living room window with a mattress, placed two wire coat hangers around the victim’s neck, then used a dental pick from the bathroom to carve symbols onto the victim’s chest.
According to police, the symbols were the number “5″ and the letter “M,” but they were scratched into the victim’s skin backwards, so he would be able to read them in a mirror.
The men then spent an hour in the apartment, and when they left, they took nothing except for his keys.
After waiting to be sure men had left the area, the victim began screaming, loudly. Police officers arrived shortly after 9:45 p.m. and kicked in the door because the bound victim — who claims not to know either of the men who assaulted him — was unable to answer it.
Scott Eric Kaufman is the proprietor of the AV Club's Internet Film School and, in addition to Raw Story, also writes for Lawyers, Guns & Money. He earned a Ph.D. in English Literature from the University of California, Irvine in 2008.
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