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More Chaos in Washington: Man Sets Himself on Fire at National Mall

"horrifying"

UPDATE 11:50 a.m. ET — 10/5: The man who set himself on fire on the National Mall Friday has died from the injuries he sustained police said Saturday, according to the Associated Press.

Officer Araz Alali said the man died Friday night and was so badly burned he will need to be identified through either his DNA or dental records.

Police are still investigating a motive for the man's decision to set himself ablaze.

UPDATE 6:00 p.m. ET: WASHINGTON (AP) -- A fire official says a man has been flown to the hospital after setting himself on fire on the National Mall.

Fire crews responded Friday afternoon to a report of a man on fire at 7th Street and Madison Drive. A witness says she saw a man dump a red canister of gasoline on his head and then set himself on fire.

D.C. Fire Department spokesman Tim Wilson says the man has life-threatening injuries.

His name and age weren't immediately known.

Katy Scheflen says 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.

She says passing joggers took off their shirts to help douse the flames.

Several reports and eyewitness accounts indicate that a man set himself on fire at the National Mall in Washington, D.C. on Friday afternoon.

Fire Department spokesman Timothy J. Wilson told the Washington Post that the man was transported to the hospital with "life threatening injuries." Officials weren't positive what started the fire, though some witnesses claim they saw the man light himself on fire.

The news quickly circulated on Twitter with some claiming to have seen the man "dancing" down the National Mall while engulfed in flames.

(Twitter)

A U.S. Park Police helicopter transported the man to a hospital, Reuters' Myles Miller reported.

"The man apparently burned himself as an act of protest," the reporter wrote on Twitter.

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