A 69-year-old man in Ohio donning a U.S. Marines uniform allegedly set himself on fire while ranting about President-elect Donald Trump.
“All I can say is God help us and help Trump, too,” said witness Denise Bowman, the Akron Beacon Journal reports. “God help our country.”
Beacon says she was already growing increasingly worried about protests throughout the country, but now she is even more alarmed.
“And now that I’ve seen this, a suicide attempt with a veteran, I’m scared," she said. "I don’t know what’s going to happen next.”
It all began after the unidentified man, who claimed to be a veteran, entered Angels Falls Coffee in Akron, Ohio, asking about a recent anti-Trump protest.
“For less than a second, he was calm,” recalls Bowman. “But then he became agitated. His tone changed, his body language changed and he got loud.”
After sharing with customers at high volume that he had given blood for the country, his language turned crude.
When an employee asked him to quiet down because there were kids nearby, the man became aggressive.
“He said ‘I have a f***ing gun, you S.O.B., and I’m not afraid to use it,’” Bowman said.
He then reportedly left the shop, walking away toward a side street when he asked a man who was passing by, known only as Mike, to take a photo.
The next thing Mike knew, the 69-year-old man used gasoline from his car to set himself ablaze.
Witnesses ran to the scene to extinguish the man, who fell to the ground in a fetal position, reportedly burned all over. “He had been wearing cloth gloves and they were burned off,” said Jim King, co-owner of the coffee shop the man had walked out of before setting himself on fire. “Part of his clothes burned away, too.”
Police officers say the man suffered serious burns but is now in stable condition.
Akron Police Sgt. Dennis Woodall said he could not confirm witnesses' comments about what caused the man to set himself on fire, reports The Associated Press.