Man Who Set Himself on Fire on National Mall Has Died

Marina Koren
National Journal

A man who lit himself on fire on the National Mall Friday afternoon has died, the Associated Press reports.

The man, who poured a can of gasoline over his body before setting it ablaze, died from his injuries Friday night at MedStar Washington Hospital Center, where he was airlifted after police arrived to the scene near Madison and Seventh streets.

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A local fire department spokesman said the man was so badly burned that DNA and dental records must be used to identify him.

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A witness told AP that "she was walking along the Mall when she saw a man by himself pick up a can of gasoline and empty its contents on his head before setting himself ablaze." Passing joggers stripped off their shirts and used them to attempt to subdue the flames. The man was airlifted to the hospital, which tweeted Friday night that he was in critical condition. 

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The reason for self-immolation remains unclear. 

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