VIDEO: Texas Officer Seriously Burned When Suspect Lights Himself on Fire
Three Cedar Hill, Texas, police officers were burned—one seriously—while trying to subdue a burglary suspect who set himself on fire Wednesday afternoon, authorities said.
All three officers and the suspect, who was shot during the struggle, were taken to Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, Cedar Hill spokesman Corky Brown told the Dallas Morning News.
Two detectives, Mike Hernandez and Brandon Woodall, were released from the hospital Wednesday evening. Officer Ann McSwain suffered more serious burns and told Cedar Hill Police Chief Steve Rhodes she was in a lot of pain, Brown said.
The three officers were pursuing the man, a suspect in an apartment complex burglary, about 3 p.m. near Belt Line Road and U.S. Highway 67, Lt. Charles Reiss said. The suspect fled on foot to a nearby strip mall, where McSwain confronted him.
The three officers followed the man and tried to subdue him, Reiss said. He set himself on fire during the struggle, engulfing McSwain in the flames.
The man was pouring liquid—believed to be gasoline—from a plastic bottle onto himself, witnesses said.
McSwain suffered serious burns on her hands, arms, and the back of her head. She is expected to survive but will require surgeries.
The unidentified suspect is hospitalized with serious burns and a gunshot wound. No updates were available on his condition.
McSwain was aided at the scene by a civilian who took off his shirt to beat down the flames.
"We want to express our sincere thanks to the young man who rendered aid to Officer McSwain until the paramedics arrived yesterday afternoon," Rhodes said. "His act of kindness and caring will not be forgotten by the officers of the Cedar Hill Police Department or our community."