SAN FRANCISCO (CBSLA.com) — A man with a Molotov cocktail was expected to be charged after police say he lit himself on fire in front of officers last weekend.
The incident unfolded last Sunday in the 2100 block of Jennings Street in San Francisco.
It was there that officers with the Bayview Station responded to a call regarding a male making threats to use a gasoline bomb.
When they arrived, they made contact with the 30-year-old San Francisco resident.
Police said the man spoke to officers briefly, then walked away.
That’s when the man removed a bottle from his pocket, poured the contents over himself, and began to walk toward police, authorities said.
“At approximately 90 feet away, he uttered remarks about officers not turning their backs on him and referenced police shootings,” the San Francisco Police Department said in a news release.
Once the man reached 50-feet, that’s when police say he produced a cigarette lighter and set himself on fire.
“As the fire spread and engulfed his upper body, the man advanced on several officers at a fast pace, closing the distance,” police said in a news release.
Within seconds, police said the man began to strip off his clothes.
The man was treated at the scene by medics before being transported to the hospital.
He is expected to be charged on suspicion of aggravated assault and possession of an incendiary device, police said.
“Despite the imminent danger posed by the fire and the possibility of an explosive device, these officers followed their training to create time and distance to help keep the situation from escalating further,” said San Francisco Police Chief William Scott. “Our members are committed to keeping our City safe by using smart strategies and tactics that prioritize the protection of human lives.”
Police said a preliminary investigation has revealed that the subject had allegedly chased a female victim, and made a threat prior to officers arriving on scene.