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San Jose Police Rescue Man in Burning Van Caught on Camera

San Jose Police Rescue Man in Burning Van Caught on Camera

San Jose Police Rescue Man

San Jose Police Rescue Man in Burning Van Caught on Camera

Police were called to a parking lot in San Jose, California last week for a man inside a van that caught fire. The man appeared to be living in his vehicle and refusing to leave. Witness video captured how quickly the situation escalated on July 9.

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“It happened so quick. That van started burning up so quick that we just went and did what we had to do at the time,” said Officer Chris Perilli with the San Jose Police Department.

“It was less than 60 seconds because we saw smoke and by the time we were processing that, it was a rescue,” added Officer Tim Wright.

SJPD posted the images on Facebook, captured from Wright’s bodycam.

“Our perception was, he was having some kind of mental health crisis and clearly was not thinking about his own safety,” said Wright.

The officers said the man was grabbing the tire when they tried to pull him out, even as small explosions where going off inside his van. That’s when officers had to tase the man. Shortly after the rescue, the van exploded and the tree next to it caught fire.

“We’re going to have to tase him to let go and that was the only thing that got him to let go of that van.”

The man was taken to hospital for assessment but no injuries.

San Jose Police Department posted the images on Facebook to praise the officers for their actions.

“We just want the community to know that we’re here for everybody, unhoused, people with mental health issues, the rest of the community,” said Pirelli.


Fugitive Watch was founded in 1992 by two San Jose police officers, Steve Ferdin and Scott Castruita. Fugitive Watch is a reality-based television show, newspaper and website, We can also be found on social media such as InstagramFacebook, and Twitter. The mission of Fugitive Watch is to make Your community safer by helping law enforcement fight crime. Fugitive Watch brings the community, local business, and law enforcement together to solve crimes, apprehend wanted fugitives and provide education and crime prevention information to the community.

Business and private sponsorship help Fugitive Watch empower the community to strike back at crime from the safety of their living rooms. Fugitive Watch has been credited by law enforcement with over several 1000 crimes solved or fugitives apprehended. Fugitive Watch also helps improve the safety of police officers by locating fugitives for law enforcement so they can more safely arrest them rather than unexpectedly running across them through extremely dangerous routine “chance encounters”. As law enforcement officers know all too well, These “chance encounters” have resulted in countless officer injuries and deaths.

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