WEST JORDAN, Utah, July 26, 2018 (Gephardt Daily) — Police and ambulances responded to the scene after a man at a 7-Eleven store in West Jordan drank and then doused himself with gasoline and set himself on fire.
Sgt. J.C. Holt with West Jordan Police Department told Gephardt Daily a detective happened to be driving by and saw there was a fire on the side of the road near the 7-Eleven, at 6990 S. Redwood Road just before 12:30 p.m.
“The detective turned around to start assisting with the fire to start blocking off the area and noticed it was actually a person on fire,” Holt said. “Our investigators got on scene and we learned that there was an adult male who came to the gas station for whatever reason. He was reported to have been drinking gasoline and dousing himself with gasoline and then he lit himself on fire. As the officers were trying to help him and render aid he was talking about how he had meant to do this and it was on purpose, and so we’re not sure the reasons why at this time. Those are the issues we’re sorting out right now. He did not want the officer to help him and was fairly combative. We’re trying to figure out what would lead him to do this.”
The 48-year-old man has serious burns and has been transported to an area hospital to receive treatment, Holt said. He is in critical condition and it’s unclear if he will survive. The majority of the man’s burns are on his lower extremities, and he has burns on his arms too. The man was conscious before he was transported, and was talking about personal issues he was going through.
Holt said several bystanders attempted to assist the man, by dumping water on him. The first officer on scene also utilized a fire extinguisher that was in his vehicle to spray the man with and get some of the flames out.
“It was really a joint effort with quite a few people that got involved to help this man,” Holt said.
People inside the store had noticed the man was drinking from a water bottle that had gasoline in it and then the fire started, he said.
No one who was assisting the man was injured.
Holt said police are not releasing the man’s identity yet and are in the process of attempting to reach his family.
Gephardt Daily has a crew on the scene and will have more information as it becomes available.