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News

Driver Who Set Himself On Fire During NJ Police Pursuit Dies

52nd Street, Broadway
52nd Street, Broadway Photo Credit: GoogleMaps

UPDATE: A driver who set himself on fire while being pursued by Bayonne police has died, authorities said.

Officers in an unmarked vehicle activated their lights and siren in an attempt to pull over the as-yet unidentified driver for several violations in the area of 54th Street and Broadway shortly before 11 p.m. July 13, Acting New Jersey Attorney General Andrew J. Bruck said.

The driver kept going, heading west on 50th Street before eventually turning down dead-ended 52nd Street, he said.

Officers approached the vehicle after he stopped and repeatedly ordered him out, Bruck said.

The driver ignored their commands, then lit a fire that engulfed the interior with flames and smoke, the attorney general said.

Police tried to douse the flames while calling firefighters, who extinguished the blaze, Bruck said.

The driver was taken to St. Barnabas Medical Center in Livingston with serious burn-related injuries.

He was pronounced dead just after noon last Sunday, Bruck said.

Under state law, his Office of Public Integrity and Accountability (OPIA) must investigate the incident because of police involvement, the attorney general said.

More information will be released as the review progresses, he said.

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