Suspect Bursts Into Flames After Being Tasered by Police

taser gun bart officer-218-85A 36-year-old Australian man burst into flames after being tasered by an officer with the West Australian Police. The man had doused himself with gasoline and was carrying a lighter when the police arrived in Warburton. The police were responding to a report that people were sniffing glue at the location.

The man was still carrying the gas can when he ran from the house and was ordered to stop. When he failed to stop, the officer fired the taser resulting in him bursting in flame.

To make this scene more bizarre, a woman inside the house began to throw rocks at the officer as he struggled to put out the flames on the man.

The man was charged with assault with intent to prevent arrest and possession of a deleterious substance and the woman was charged with assaulting a public officer.

This is not the first such case. In 2007, Juan Flores Lopez, 47, burst into flames after he was tasered. He also had doused himself with gasoline. Lopez eventually died from his burns.

Two years ago, a man in Texas died in a similar incident when he too caught fire after he was shot with a Taser.

In that case as well, the man had poured gasoline on himself and was resisting arrest.

For the full story, click here.

15 thoughts on “Suspect Bursts Into Flames After Being Tasered by Police”

  1. Let’s see. Police officer puts life on line, responding to reports that ‘suspects are sniffing glue’.

    Knowing the behavior of suspects who have been sniffing glue can include illogical and violent behavior, police officers adopt mindset intended to subdue suspect(s) (however many there are and regardless of their unpredictable behavior due to the glue-sniffing activities) and simultaneously preserve their own lives (the lives of the officers who are going into an unknown situation characterized by danger).

    Officers arrive at destination to find suspect running and acting abnormally.

    Police order man to stop. Suspect ignores officers. At some point, officers feel threatened by actions of running man and decide to taser him rather than risk bodily injury subduing man who appears to be out of his mind on glue.

    Unfortunately, suspect has doused himself in gasoline without having the forethought to inform officers of this fact.

    Now, if those of you who are reading this believe this suspect has, in no way, written the eventual outcome of this encounter then I can only wish you well in whatever fairy tale you call reality. And I ask you to please wake up and smell the smoke before you meet a similar end.

  2. CMA 1, August 6, 2009 at 7:46 pm

    Let’s get rid of tasers and let police officers shot people again. Officers are usually trained to shot to immobilize. This may avoid some lawsuits and save tax dollars.

    Well heck lets just dispense with trials of any kind and just hang all the bad people. Nah, then you’d have people complaining about being hung with a new or old rope. SO lets just certify all of the LEO’s in any force including Blackwater. They get to make the decision of who is “The Bad People,” smoke em down with tear gas and while they are all down coughing pop cyanide tablets into the mouths of the offending party(s). Screw the justice system. It is more humane than making them swim with handcuffs on, you would agree, wouldn’t you ?

  3. Let’s get rid of tasers and let police officers shot people again. Officers are usually trained to shot to immobilize. This may avoid some lawsuits and save tax dollars.


    There’s a flurry of taser news in Canada.

    The Braidwood Inquiry in B.C. has concluded that taser “can cause death”.

    Read that again: TASERS CAN CAUSE DEATH.

    This conclusion was reached in spite of Taser International sending their best and brightest spokespuppets to the inquiry to testify that tasers are ‘inherently safe’.

    The perverted worldview of Taser International that ‘tasers-R-safe’, was completely rejected.

    Logically following from that conclusion is that the tasers are being used far too often, during incidents that do not justify using a device that is capable of killing.

    So there are sweeping new restrictions on the use of tasers in BC, and the rest of Canada will be forced by logic to follow the same rules, or (if they choose not to) be sued onto the next galaxy.

    What remains to be seen is if the police will actually follow the new rules, or if they’ll ignore them, make up stories as cover, and then get caught in a tangle of lies by the unblinking eye of bystanders’ mobile phone cameras.

    Lots more on my blog.
    (Don’t forget the dash)

  5. The victim was an un-Australian aboriginal, a descendant of illegal migrants who arrived 40,000 years before the rightful owners arrived on 26 January 1788 and Australia’s patience with these people ran out by 27 January 1788. There is nothing abnormal about Australian police killing blacks with impunity, using a taser to set them alight is more efficient than beating them to death.

    I don’t know whether the man was a threat to police or not, but I am sure that the police believed he was and would have done so even if objective judgment would decide not. The perception of police is warped by racism and in remote parts of Australia anti-aboriginal racism is every bit as powerful as that of the NYPD officers who were acquiited of murder after shooting Amadou Diallo 19 times before they realized that he was unarmed.

  6. “The police were responding to a report that people were sniffing glue at the location.”

    Thát they respond to,… “Osama determined to strike” however…..

    The force is a farce.

  7. Seems like everyone would have been better off if the officer had taken out his gun and shot the man in the foot to stop him. Tasering someone who is doused in gasoline is undoubtedly the worst of the officer’s options. If the “protect and serve” folks are going to be permitted to use tasers (and I don’t think they should have them), they should go through a lot more training – maybe training on the scientific aspects of how the device works and when NOT to use it.

  8. @NPO

    No, the situation does not leave room for guesswork, but it does leave room for thinking. For example, gasoline is obviously combustible, and a taser being an electrical “sparking” device is obviously contraindicated when it comes to a person doused in fuel. An officer wielding a weapon most understand how to use it. They are responsible for always using the minimal amount of force to diffuse a situation; that includes forseeing possible effects from their attempt to do so.

  9. A man high on glue burning and carrying more fuel and a lighter, does not leave any room for guess work.

  10. NPO,
    I was going to post something about how it never said that he’d actually threatened the police but I think that’s actually irrelevant.

    The fact of the matter is that the officer approached a flaming suspect who was carrying EVEN MORE gasoline to try to help him and persisted in doing so even as he was being assaulted to the result of receiving injuries of his own. I don’t doubt that he felt threatened and I hope people don’t try to twist this against him.

  11. The officer did right by defending himself against an individual who is threatening in such manner.

  12. I don’t know what I would do if a man ran at me with gasoline and a lighter.

    I don’t fault the police officer in this instance. The woman throwing rocks at the officer (while he was trying to put the man out), is indicative of the volatility of the situation.

  13. “Authorities have launched an inquiry into what happened Monday when an officer arrived at the 36-year-old man’s house in the remote desert community of Warburton.”

    Yeah baby looks like he was a real threat. Taser em Dano.

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