Crime Updated: April 20, 2024

Man who set himself on fire during trial in court dies

By Adekunle Obas
April 20, 2024

A man who set himself on fire outside the Manhattan court where former President Donald Trump's hush-money trial was being held has died.

Maxwell Azzarello, 37, doused himself in a liquid before throwing conspiracy-theory pamphlets into the air.

The incident occurred in a park opposite the courthouse in New York during the ongoing criminal trial of former president Donald Trump, as reported by multiple U.S. media outlets, including the New York Times and CNN.

According to unanimous reports, the man poured a liquid over himself and set himself on fire, prompting screams from bystanders who attempted to assist him.

Police officers quickly arrived at the scene and extinguished the flames. Subsequently, the man was taken into an ambulance and transported away for medical attention.


It was initially unclear why he set himself on fire.

The incident took place in Collect Pond Park, directly opposite the courthouse where the criminal trial of Trump is currently taking place.

The courthouse is extensively cordoned off and numerous police officers are on permanent duty there.

Dozens of media representatives with cameras and broadcast vans are gathered around it.

Opponents and supporters of Trump are allowed to gather for demonstrations in the park, but so far only a few have done so on the days of the trial.


The grounds are surrounded by barricades, but there are also open entrances.

Investigators are still interviewing witnesses and said he didn't appear to say anything before setting fire to himself.

Three NYPD officers and one court officer had minor injuries after helping to extinguish the blaze.

Officials said they will now reassess security outside the court.



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