A man set himself on fire on Friday in front of the New York court where the historic criminal trial against former US President Donald Trump is taking place. The man poured liquid over himself and set himself on fire, the New York Times and CNN, among others, reported unanimously, and CNN also showed live images. Before setting himself on fire, he is said to have thrown leaflets into the air. The police confirmed corresponding media reports without giving further details.

The surrounding people screamed and tried to help. Police jumped on the person before a fire extinguisher was used, US media reported. The man was then carried into an ambulance and driven away. The man was taken to a hospital and is in critical condition, the New York Fire Department said. It was initially completely unclear why the man set himself on fire. Nothing was initially known about his identity.

The incident occurred at Collect Pond Park, directly across from the courthouse where Trump’s criminal trial is currently taking place. Shortly before, it was announced that the jury for the criminal trial against Trump was complete, as six replacements had been selected in addition to the twelve jurors. The courthouse is largely cordoned off and numerous police officers are on constant duty there. Dozens of media representatives with cameras and broadcast vans have gathered around. Opponents and supporters of Trump are allowed to gather in the park for demonstrations, but so far only a few have done so on the days of the trial. The area has barricades all around, but also open entrances.

Editor’s note: This article has been updated.