Man sets himself on fire outside Trump trial in New York

The man who set himself on fire outside the Manhattan courthouse where Donald Trump’s trial is under way has now been identified as a self-described “investigative researcher” who posted a conspiracy-laden manifesto online moments before the incident.

Maxwell Azzarello, a 37-year-old man from Florida, shared a string of conspiracy theories on his social media accounts in recent months, in which he railed against the rich and powerful and claimed “our only goal is to abolish our criminal government”.

On Friday afternoon, mere minutes after the final jurors were selected in the former president’s criminal case, Mr Azzarello self-immolated outside the court at Collect Pond Park.

He is now at Manhattan’s Weill Cornell Medicine Burn Center in critical condition, police said.

Max Azzarello, pictured in a video he posted on his Instagram account, self-immolated outside the Manhattan Criminal Court on Friday (Instagram)

Three NYPD officers and one court officer sustained minor injuries from the fire but are in stable condition, authorities told reporters.

Less than an hour before he set himself on fire he railed against corruption in the US government in a manifesto type document posted on Substack, seen by The Independent.

In it, Mr Azzarello describes himself as an “investigative researcher” and said that the act of self-immolation was “an extreme act of protest” over a “totalitarian con” and warned of an impending “apocalyptic fascist world coup.”

“To my friends and family, witnesses and first responders, I deeply apologize for inflicting this pain upon you. But I assure you it is a drop in the bucket compared to what our government intends to inflict,” he wrote.

Maxwell Azzarello’s manifesto, pictured, was published just before he self-immolated on Friday (Social media)

Authorities said he threw pamphlets throughout the park before setting himself on fire.

“The pamphlets seem to be propaganda-based almost like a conspiracy theory type of pamphlets,” NYPD Chief of Detectives Joseph Kenny said. “Some information in regards to Ponzi schemes, and the fact that some of our local educational institutes are front for the mob. So a little bit of a conspiracy theory going on here.”

Maxwell Azzarello reportedly threw pamphlets promoting conspiracy theories before self-immolating on Friday (ANGELA WEISS/AFP via Getty Images)

Police spoke to his family, who were unaware he travelled to New York. Authorities believe he arrived sometime between 13 April and 19 April. He was unknown to authorities before this incident, police said, and he did not breach security protocols as the park was open to the public at the time of the incident.

Public records indicate Mr Azzarello is a registered Democrat.

One witness, Dave, spoke to The Independent after witnessing the horrific scene.

“Papers clattered on the ground and that caught our attention well my attention anyway, and I kinda wondered, ‘Well what are those papers?’ But then he pulled out a can and poured it over himself,” Dave told The Independent.

“People were horrified,” he continued. “There weren’t many people. People started screaming.”

An open container pictured on its side at the scene of a self-immolation near the Manhattan Criminal Court. One witness told The Independent he watched the man, Maxwell Azzarello, pull a can out of his bag and pour it over himself (Reuters)

Dave said the incident happened so quickly that people could not move to stop the individual.

“It happened pretty fast,” he told The Independent. “It’s awful to see that.”

Some pamphlets on the scene read, “The True History of the World.” New York police officers scrambled to pick them up as they blew over a nearby fence.

A secret service agent spoke to Mr Trump inside the courthouse at about the same time police received the 911 call, CNN reports.

Law enforcement, pictured, responded to reports of self-immolation outside Manhattan Criminal Court just after 1.30 pm local time (ABC News)

Mr Trump’s trial began on Monday with jury selection. Now, all twelve jurors and five alternates have been selected. Opening arguments will begin on 22 April in the case against Mr Trump. The former president faces 34 counts of falsifying business records to conceal a payment made to adult film star Stormy Daniels to keep quiet about an alleged affair.

There will be no delay in the trial proceedings, a Manhattan Criminal Court spokesperson told reporters on the scene.

Two years ago, a climate activist self-immolated outside the US Supreme Court in protest against the climate crisis. Wynn Alan Bruce died on 23 April 2022, one day after setting himself on fire. He is only the second-known person to self-immolate in connection with the climate crisis.

Source link

Denial of responsibility! NewsConcerns is an automatic aggregator of the all world’s media. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials, please contact us by email – [email protected]. The content will be deleted within 24 hours.

Leave a Comment