Man dies after setting himself on fire in front of the Supreme Court, police say

Visitors walk outside the Supreme Court building on Capitol Hill in Washington, Monday, Feb. 21, 2022. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

A man has died after setting himself on fire in front of the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., on Friday night, Metropolitan Police said Saturday. The court said to CBS News in a statement Friday there were no other injuries, and there did not appear to be a public safety concern.

Police identified the man as 50-year-old Wynn Bruce, of Boulder, Colorado, and said he died of his injuries after being airlifted to a hospital following the incident. At approximately 6:30 p.m., he went on to the plaza in front of the court building and set himself on fire, the court said. The court did not offer any specifics on the person or what their motivation may have been.

Supreme Court Police, U.S. Capitol Police and the Metropolitan Police Department responded to the incident, the court said, and a medical helicopter airlifted the person to a local hospital.

“The area remains closed for further investigation, but this is not a public safety issue,” the court said.

The incident comes amid a chaotic day in Washington D.C., where earlier Friday, multiple people were shot on a busy street. Police have identified a person of interest in the case, but have not named or apprehended a suspect.

If you or someone you know is in emotional distress or suicidal crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255). For more information about mental health care resources and support, The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) HelpLine can be reached Monday through Friday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m. ET, at 1-800-950-NAMI (6264) or email

Jan Crawford contributed reporting. 

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