A woman strolled into a U.S. congressman’s Chicago office Tuesday, chugged a bottle a hand sanitizer and then set herself on fire, police said.
The unidentified 43-year-old was seriously burned in the self-inflicted blaze inside U.S. Rep. Danny Davis’ office, but her condition stabilized, the Chicago Tribune reported.
“We really don’t know why,” Davis told the newspaper. “We don’t know her and we don’t know exactly what she may have been coming for.”
Office staffers said the woman spoke briefly with an employee around 3 p.m. in the office’s lobby before she picked up the bottle of disinfectant and started drinking it. She then poured some of the sanitizer on herself and set herself on fire with a lighter.
Davis was not in the lobby at the time of the ignition.
While most visitors check into the office by signing a logbook with their name and the reason for their visit, the woman “never got to that point,” Davis said.
Staffers tried to blast the woman with a fire extinguisher, but she ran out of the lobby while still smoldering.
The woman was taken to the hospital in serious condition.
“We just got a call from the hospital indicating she is stabilized and undergoing treatment, and they say it’s going to take a while. A long time, perhaps, but hopefully she’s going to be OK,” Dabis said.
The woman’s name was not immediately released.
Davis, a Democrat representing Illinois’ 7th congressional district, was first elected in 1996.