Sheriff’s Dept.: Man throws knife, sets self himself on fire

MESILLA, N.M. (AP) – Dona Ana County authorities say a man threw a knife at a Mesilla town marshal and then set himself on fire after the marshal stopped to help him as walked along a street carrying a gasoline can.

The Sheriff’s Department says 48-year-old Gaspar Ayala-Arellano doused himself with gas from the can and used a lighter to ignite the gas.

He was jailed on suspicion of aggravated assault on a peace officer after being treated at a hospital for burns on his legs and torso.

According to the Sheriff’s Department, deputies who arrived to help the marshal during the incident that began late Tuesday night were able to quickly extinguish the fire.

The thrown knife struck the marshal but she wasn’t injured.

Mesilla is a suburb of Las Cruces.

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