A Warren County man is still alive after he chopped off his own arm and then barricaded himself inside a shed in a suicide attempt.
The man, Joseph Bratcher Jr., was airlifted to Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville by LifeForce helicopter shortly after the Sunday morning incident that happened in an outbuilding near his home in the Viola community.
According to sheriff’s department reports, Bratcher had been drinking beer when he told family members he loved them but he wanted to kill himself. He went into a shed on their property and when he didn’t return, family members went looking for him.
“The victim’s son stated his father had locked the door to the shed with wire and when (a female family member) went to check on him she noticed an arm lying outside the door,” deputy Billy Joe Crouch said in his report. “She went to the trailer and was crying and screaming so they went to the shed and pulled open the door.”
They found Bratcher face down inside with his left arm missing. He had cut it off with a chop saw. Family members immediately began first aid, trying to stop the bleeding from the missing limb.
Authorities are treating the incident as an attempted suicide.