Port Authority police officers rescue man who attempted to jump from George Washington Bridge
Two Port Authority police officers were able to pull off a dramatic rescue and save a man who was trying to jump off the George Washington Bridge.
Police say they received a call from Palisades Hospital that a man who may have wanted to harm himself was at the bridge.
Port Authority Officer Robert Wallace first encountered the man and saw him get out of his car. Wallace says that the man pulled out a gun when he went to speak with him.
"And at this time he has his hand in his coat pocket and he's moving it around so it's getting me nervous," Wallace says.
Wallace says that the man then pulled out what looked like a gun, and pointed it at him. That's when Wallace says he called for backup and the man climbed over the edge.
The upper level of the bridge was closed to all traffic while officers attempted a rescue. One of those officers was Port Authority Officer Javier Cerna.
"My partner strapped me up on the truck. I was ready to engage at him or whatever. We spoke and he asked for a cigarette," Cerna says. "I got close to him and he grabbed the cigarette and I grabbed him and that's how it went."
The officers were able to pull the man, identified as a 37-year-old from Edgewater, up over the side of the bridge and onto the surface.
The man is now being evaluated at the hospital. Police say the gun he allegedly pointed at officers was a pellet gun designed to look like a real gun.
He faces unlawful possession of a weapon and aggravated assault on an officer charges.
The upper levels of the bridge were reopened to traffic by the afternoon.