Bethesda Man Dies after Setting Himself on Fire Near White House

Bethesda Man Dies after Setting Himself on Fire Near White House

Montgomery County police had issued a missing-persons alert Wednesday

| Published:

Arnav Gupta

Montgomery County Police

A Bethesda man has died after setting himself on fire Wednesday near the White House, authorities said.

Arnav Gupta left his house on Cindy Lane about 9:20 a.m. Wednesday and three hours later set himself on fire on the Ellipse near 15th Street and Constitution Avenue, according to U.S. Park Police and Montgomery County Police.

Montgomery County police issued an alert Wednesday asking for help in finding Gupta after they said there was concern for his “physical and emotional welfare.”

U.S. Park Police said they responded to the Ellipse about 12:25 p.m. after receiving a call about an adult male who “lit himself on fire” in an area frequented by tourists near the White House. Secret Service officers helped extinguish the flames.

Gupta, 33, was taken to a hospital where he died Wednesday night, according to Park Police, who have turned over the investigation to the Washington Metropolitan Police Department.

A 44-second video posted on a social media platform captured the incident from about a half-block away. The video, which carried a warning about graphic content, had more than 380,000 views by Thursday morning.



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