An Arizona cop was apparently at the right place at the right time when an apparently suicidal man attempted to take his life.
What are the details?
A Chandler, Arizona, police officer is being credited for saving the life of an unnamed man in March. The footage is now going viral.
KSAZ-TV, Officer Aaron Little can be seen in bodycam footage approaching a 26-year-old man who seemed bent on jumping from a highway overpass.
Little can be heard pleading with the man, begging him to climb back over the railing, and even offering to hug the man in distress.
“I’ll hug you, man, I don’t care,” Little can be heard saying. “I just want to talk to you, I swear.”
After some back and forth conversation, Little was able to get the man talking, and eventually convinced him to come back over to the right side of the fence.
“Come give me that hug,” Little told the man after he’d gotten his footing. “I’m not going to do anything to you.”
The bodycam footage captured the moment as the young man approached Little and took him up on that embrace, sobbing the whole way.
Erica Chestnut-Ramirez, who is director of crisis at Empact Suicide Prevention Center, told KSAZ that Little did everything right.
“[It’s key] being sympathetic, non-judgmental, calm, so the fact that the officer didn’t seem shocked by what the individual was doing, and maintained his distance from him,” Chestnut-Ramirez said.
The Chandler Police Department shared footage of the incident, and captioned the video:
In the early evening of Thursday, March 28, 2019, a 26-year-old male climbed the protective railing of a pedestrian bridge that spans the Price Freeway with the intent to jump. Officer A. Little arrived at the bridge and, after developing a rapport with the male, Officer Little was able to convince him to climb off the railing and back to the safety of the bridge.
While this incident is extraordinary, the compassion Officer Little showed is a common occurrence with the men & women of the Chandler Police Department.