Web Exclusive: Facebook used to save suicidal man

ODESSA, FL (CNN) - Web Exclusive

A Florida man, who said he wanted to end his life, is alive,  thanks to a quick-thinking police officer. The sheriff's deputy used social media to help talk the man out of a potentially deadly situation.

Facebook, is the way many of us connect with friends, but in this case, it was the way a deputy connected with a suicidal man.

"We were actually able to send a friend request, which he accepted immediately."

Corporal Arthur Morrison is part of the Pasco Sheriff's Office Negotiating Team. He responded to this Odessa house where a man barricaded himself in a shed and told his wife he wanted the cops to take his life. He had access to a gun and the Internet.

"He was refusing to answer the phone and did not want to speak to us over the phone, but he was very willing to type and talk through the computer." said Morrison.

So, from that shed, the corporal typed him a life line on Facebook chat.

The man said, "Pull the trigger so I don't have to."

The corporal replied "We don't want to do that, ever. That's not how we want to remember you. I am here to help not hurt."

After a lengthy conversation, the man set the shed on fire and came out.

"We have never used Facebook before to negotiate. We've never texted or sent anything through the computer, so for us, this is a first time ever." said Morrison.

A first time at saving a life on the popular social networking website.

That negotiator is also a school resource officer. He says he only recently got a Facebook account as a way to help communicate with students.


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