Man Tries To Chop Off Arms At West Covina Home Depot - FOX 10 News |

Man Tries To Chop Off Arms At West Covina Home Depot

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West Covina, CA -

(CNS) A man who went into a Home Depot in West Covina and used saws to cut his arms down to the bones remains hospitalized today after undergoing surgery.

Police were called about the self-mutilation at the store at 2220 S. Azusa Ave. at 12:46 p.m. Wednesday, said Cpl. Rudy Lopez of the West Covina Police Department.

Luckily, an off-duty paramedic - identified in a news report as Pasadena Fire Department Capt. Art Hurtado - had been shopping nearby and used rags and twine to fashion makeshift tourniquets after the man grabbed several small hand saws and sliced into his arms, Lopez said.

"He lost a lot of blood," Lopez said.

The man's current condition was unknown, according to police. But, if he survives, it will be because of Hurtado's actions, Lopez said.

The man was unconscious when he was found in a pool of his own blood. Other shoppers stood by stunned.

Hurtado, a 21-year veteran firefighter, went to work without gloves or equipment, using items from the store's shelves to stanch the bleeding, according to local media.

"I barely had a pulse and he was just barely breathing," he told the station.

He said he asked for a lot of towels.

"They finally showed up with a large packet of quarter inch rope, nylon rope, and I ripped it open and just stretched it out and I told the police officer I want 24-inch sections. Just start cutting," he told NBC4.

He said he made the best of what he had at his disposal.

"Were we in a good place for it? No, but you improvise. You make things do. Like I said, if I didn't have rope, I would have used my shoelaces. We would have made it work."

The man didn't say anything before he cut himself and did not carry identification, Lopez said.

The store was closed for the rest of the day after the incident, Lopez told the Los Angeles Times, which reported the man underwent surgery at Queen of the Valley Hospital.

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