The decade's most triggering comedy
Police in Arkansas accidentally set a suspect on fire after a prolonged police chase.
Arkansas State Police (ASP) were in pursuit of a suspect on a motorcycle in Little Rock last week, dashcam video showed. Police finally caught up with the suspect after a prolonged chase, and when one of the officers attempted to taser him, the suspect erupted into a fireball, before police extinguished the fire and arrested the suspect.
No news reports of the incident have been published, but a full-length video of the chase from the YouTube channel Police Pursuits provided the full context. The pursuit began at around 1:11 in the morning local time. ASP trooper Joseph Killian was in hot pursuit of a suspect speeding down the street on a motorcycle. Police chased the suspect while radioing for backup. Trooper Austin Duncan-Flemister caught up and gave chase, as the suspect continued onto the highway at speeds in excess of 100 miles per hour. At around the 8:40 mark of the video, the suspect cuts through a shopping center parking lot and into a residential area, where police finally catch up to him.
As the suspect attempts to escape on foot, an officer tracks him down and deploys a taser. At that point, something in the suspect’s backpack catches fire and immediately explodes into a massive fireball. “He’s on fire!” Duncan-Flemister shouts, as other officers back away. The suspect gets up, still on fire himself, and stumbles away from the larger fire, then attempts to stop, drop, and roll. “Help me! Help me!” he can be heard shouting, before police return with fire extinguishers and put the fire out.
Officers then take the suspect into custody. “I can’t breathe,” the suspect can be heard saying through Duncan-Flemister’s radio.
“None of us can,” an officer retorts, before ordering the suspect to put his hands behind his back.
Paramedics arrived on the scene shortly afterward and transported the suspect away from the scene.
“Unbeknownst to the Troopers, the suspect had a canister of gas in his backpack,” Police Pursuits wrote in the video description. “The TASER prongs likely punctured the can. Burns were mostly superficial, but obviously very painful. He is expected to make a full recovery.”
You can watch a shorter version of the video, showing the final moments of the chase, the explosion, and the arrest here:
Police in Arkansas chase a suspect who, it turns out, had a can of gasoline in his backpack. When an officer uses a taser on him, bad things result. pic.twitter.com/rrKNjpZEZo
— Mike (@Doranimated) October 21, 2022
That incident came just a few weeks after another suspect on a motorcycle had his bike catch fire while trying to escape a police chase.
Dashcam video from the YouTube channel Arkansas State Police Videos showed trooper Dakota Davis in pursuit of another suspect on a motorcycle on a highway outside of Little Rock. Police corner the suspect on the right shoulder of the highway; the suspect runs into the concrete barrier on the side of the road, where he can be heard falling off his bike. The bike rolls in front of Davis’ cruiser while the suspect flees on foot. While police can be seen chasing the suspect on foot, the bike catches fire in front of Davis’ cruiser. Davis quickly returns and pulls the car away, while another officer extinguishes the fire.