Appearing at Teesside Magistrates' Court, defendant Kamil Kalwarski set himself on fire claiming that the court had been treating him unfairly. Kalwarski managed to scorch himself but had also reportedly approached the judge while on fire. Police officers tackled him before he could harm any other person present in court. He had reportedly threatened to set himself on fire before the incident.

On Thursday, July 16 Kalwarski appeared for his hearing. He was in court for allegedly breaching non-molestation orders in Hartlepool in the months of October and November of last year. The 38-year-old Polish national claimed that his trial was unfair. He had warned that he would set himself on fire if he was sentenced.

To prevent the man from injuring himself, all hand sanitizer bottles were removed from the courtroom. Two officers were seated at the back of the room as a safety measure. Kalwarski was also searched before being allowed into the courtroom. Even though the precautions were taken, he could not be stopped.

Kalwarski managed to sneak in his own bottle of hand sanitizer. During the trial, he pulled out the bottle and poured the alcohol-based liquid on himself. Using a cigarette lighter, he proceeded to turn himself into a fireball.

According to Teesside Live, the Grangetown resident pushed a court clerk before approaching Judge Timothy Capstick. The police officers managed to tackle the van driver to the floor of the courtroom and put out the blaze. Emergency services were called after the incident

A spokesperson from Cleveland police confirmed the incident that took place at Victoria Square, in Middlesbrough centre. They confirmed that the man involved has received burns to his left arm and had been taken to a hospital for treatment. Kalwarski was arrested on suspicion of assault and possession of an offensive weapon in a public place. However, he was not charged for the incident.

A North East Ambulance Service spokesperson revealed that at around 1:25 pm they responded to an emergency call from the court. Kalwarski was reportedly taken to James Cook University Hospital where he was treated for his injuries.

Speaking to The Sun, Kalwarski said that he only wanted to harm himself. He suffered burns to his left arm and ear. His hair was also scorched. The determined man claimed that even though his actions had caused him pain he did not regret setting himself ablaze.

Stephen Dixon
Man set himself on fire at Teesside Magistrates' Court. (representational image) Google Maps