WEST COVINA, Calif. (KTLA) — An off-duty paramedic is being called a hero after jumping into action to help a man who tried to cut off his arms with saws at a Home Depot store.
Police responded to a call around 12:45 p.m. Wednesday at the Home Depot store at 2220 S. Azusa Avenue in West Covina.
The man grabbed several small hand saws and sliced into his arms, West Covina police Cpl. Rudy Lopez said.
He didn’t say anything before he cut himself, and he was not carrying any identification, according to Lopez.
The man was found unconscious in a pool of his own blood, as stunned shoppers looked on.
An off-duty paramedic, identified as Pasadena Fire Department Capt. Art Hurtado, had been shopping nearby when he came upon the bloody scene.
“As I walked in he was face down. I thought it was a crime scene with a fatality,” Hurtado said at a news conference Thursday.
“At that time I knew we had to slow the bleeding down or this patient may or may not make it,” Hurtado added.
The 21-year veteran firefighter used rags and twine from the store’s shelves to create makeshift tourniquets to control the bleeding, Lopez said.
The man was taken to Queen of the Valley Medical Center where he underwent surgery.
He is listed in critical condition.