Man attempts to set self on fire in protest

September 12, 2016

A man doused his body with lighter fluid Sunday and then attempted to light himself on fire in protest against the San Luis Obispo Police allegedly pushing homeless people out of the city.

On Sunday morning, the man was attempting to light himself on fire in front of the Barnes & Noble Bookstore on Marsh Street when police threw him on the ground. The man then yelled and cursed at police as they took him into custody.

Officers then took the man to a hospital before transporting him to a San Luis Obispo County Mental Health facility, said SLO Police Sergeant Fred Michael

Capt. Chris Staley said local officers have not been attempting to run the homeless out of the city.

“We are trying to do outreach to help the homeless,” Staley said. “We try to find what services they need, addiction, housing or mental health. We try to connect them with services, and what services to connect them with depends on the individual.”

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The problem with the homeless in SLO is that there is nowhere for them to go. If they have a drug use history, mental health that isn’t well managed, they get kicked out of the shelter.

One of the basic needs of living creatures is to have a safe shelter. While some homeless are homeless by choice, there are many who would like a cot to sleep on at night, but are denied by the shelter’s policies.

So what then? They cannot go to the shelter. They cannot sleep in the creek. They have a human right to sleep somewhere, but not in the “happiest city in America.” Bad for property values. I don’t think this man wanted to really set himself on fire. Better ways to go. Maybe, just maybe he wanted a safe and warm place to sleep. I cannot imagine trying to find a place to sleep out there on the streets. Jail probably sounded pretty good.

Perhaps we need to look at we treat humans who don’t have many options.

Are all the cops in San Luis Obispo bullies and drug addicts/alcoholics and/or criminals just like Cory Pierce, Travis Morris, Steve Gesell, Daniel McDow and Armando Limon?

I for one would be interested in hearing this mans story and complaints.

Anyone who has the conviction to self immolate for his cause should be heard.