APD Prevents A Suicidal Self-Immolation – July 8, 2011

Friday, July 8, 2011

APD Press Release

Just before noon on Friday, July 8, Arcata Police responded to the 900 block of Sixth Street on the report of an adult male subject pouring gasoline on himself and a building.  The male had a lighter and was attempting to ignite the fuel.

APD coordinated a multi-agency response which included personnel from the Arcata Fire Protection District and a request for assistance from Humboldt County Mental Health Services.  Once on scene, APD officers communicated with the man, attempting to convince him not to ignite the fuel and to prevent any further self-inflicted injury.

As APD staff communicated with the male and waited the arrival of mental health personnel, the male became increasingly agitated and attempted to ignite the fuel.

Due of the immediate risk of severe injury or death to the male subject as well as a significant fire danger to the adjacent buildings, Officer Brian Hoffman of the Arcata Police Department sprang into action.

Hoffman quietly approached the male subject while other officers distracted him.  Once he was within range, he  disarmed the male of his lighter and detained him without injury to himself or the male subject.

The quick response from  the Arcata Police Department, as well as the quick thinking and immense bravery of Officer Brian Hoffman and the other APD Officers, saved the man’s life and prevented untold property damage.

As a precaution, the male subject was transported to Mad River Community Hospital for evaluation.

Note: Updated story to follow. – Ed.



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