Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Man who set himself ablaze, dies

07 October 2013, 12:00

Washington - A man who set himself on fire on the National Mall in the US capital has died of his injuries, which were so severe that authorities will have to use DNA and dental records to identify him, District of Columbia police said on Saturday.

The man died on Friday night at a Washington hospital where he had been airlifted, Officer Araz Alali, a police spokesperson, said.

The man poured the contents of a red canister of gasoline on himself in the centre portion of the National Mall on Friday afternoon. He then set himself on fire, with passing joggers taking off their shirts to help put out the flames. Police had said he was conscious and breathing at the scene, but he was airlifted to MedStar Washington Hospital Centre.

Police are investigating the man's possible motives. Lieutenant Pamela Smith of the US Park Police said she was unaware whether he carried signs or had articulated a cause.

One witness, Katy Scheflen, said she did not hear the man say anything intelligible before he set himself on fire. But she said she did notice that another man with a tripod was standing nearby and had disappeared by the time the police had arrived. It was not immediately clear whether a recording exists.

"He appeared to be waiting for something to happen. After it happened, he was gone," Scheflen, a Justice Department lawyer, said on Saturday of the man with the tripod.

"I can't say what the connection was between them or whether there was a connection," she added.

The fire occurred in a city with jangled nerves following a mass shooting on 16 September at the Washington Navy Yard that left 13 dead, including the gunman, and a high-speed car chase outside the US Capitol on Thursday. The chase ended with a woman being shot dead by police with a young child in the car.

- AP

Tags us

Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
Leave ODM if you are unhappy, Rai...

Leave ODM if you are not happy, Raila Odinga tells Senator. Read more...

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
Former Assistant Minister joins J...

A former Assistant Minister has quit PNU and joined the Jubilee Party. Read more...

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
DP Ruto intervenes as Kerio Valle...

DP William Ruto will visit Kerio Valley to try solve never-ending clashes between local residents. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
ODM MP chased down by angry Kibra...

Kibra MP Ken Okoth had a hard time in his constituency after angry youth pelted him with stones. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
Prepare for DP Ruto fight in 2022...

An MP has warned that the Kalenjin Community will not stand back and watch as DP Ruto is duped ahead of the 2022 polls. Read more...

Submitted by
William Korir
Be careful who you deal with, DP ...

Watch out for your political future, DP William Ruto has been warned. Read more...