Content warning: This video contains content relating to suicide and extreme emotional distress.
ILLINOIS — An officer implores a man, "No, no, don't do this," as she and another officer work to prevent a man from jumping off a bridge over a rail yard earlier this month, a video shows. The incident was recorded on a police body camera and was released by authorities during National Suicide Awareness month.
The officers were commended for their responses, which officials said likely saved a life that day on the 127th Street bridge over the Metra rail yard in Blue Island, Illinois.
“I am immensely proud of the job these two officers did in this incident, not only by their quick reactions to pull this individual to safety but also by their positive words to him as they did so,” said Metra CEO/Executive Director Jim Derwinski. “They are outstanding representatives of Metra and the Metra Police Department and they truly embody the spirit of My Metra.”
On Sept. 15 around 5:30 p.m., a man fled from his vehicle after he drove onto a closed road and into a construction zone, according to a news release from Metra, a commuter rail system in Chicago and surrounding suburbs.
Construction workers had called authorities after seeing a vehicle go around the road closed signs and into the construction zone, Metra police reported. They told officers they waved at the driver to stop him, but he continued forward until his vehicle got stuck.
The workers said the driver then got out of his vehicle and walked onto the 127th Street bridge.
Two Metra officers, Sgt. Will Wright and Officer Andrea Clunie, approached the man as he stood on a bridge near the railing. Both the street and bridge were closed for rebuilding a road crossing at the time.
Police said when they encountered him, the man was crying and stating that he was sorry.
The officers instructed him to turn around and put his hands behind his back for his arrest, however the man then suddenly jumped over the railing to jump off the bridge, Metra said.
As the officers worked to grab the man and pull him back, Clunie can be heard on the video saying, "No, no, don't do this."
As they pulled the man back onto the bridge, he told the officers, "I'm just tired. I'm just so tired."
Clunie replied, "And we're gonna help you out. ... Nothing is worth you taking your life, okay?"
The man was arrested and taken to Ingalls Hospital for evaluation, police said.
September is National Suicide Prevention Month and anyone who is in crisis or knows someone in crisis is urged to call the 24/7 Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255). Help can also be found online at suicidepreventionlifeline.org.