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Suicidal man saved by quick-thinking Florida deputies

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Courtesy WFLA News

PINELLAS COUNTY, FL (WFLA) -  As a dashboard camera rolled, three Pinellas deputies found a 24-year-old man standing on the top rail of the Bay Pines Bridge.

Upset about financial problems and concerns about a girlfriend, the man threatened to leap into the water below.

"I worried that he was gonna actually jump off the bridge. I believe that he had every intent of jumping off of that bridge," said Corp. Jim Brueckner

The three deputies at the scene devised a plan.

"Corporal Brueckner had kind of motioned me over to move around to the side. Corporal Brueckner then approached to try and get his attention just on him," said Deputy Troy Savetz.

"So I just basically moved to draw his attention away from Troy who snuck around behind him and was able to snatch him off the wall," said Corporal Brueckner.

The rescue happened fast, with the man kicking in protest. The deputies used their Crisis Intervention Training, or CIT, to get the man off the railing and to the ground.

"It turned out to be a win-win for everybody. We got there on scene. We all were on the same page on what we were gonna do," said Deputy Savetz.

As far as bridges go, the Bay Pines Bridge isn't especially tall. Down below, there is shallow water, and sharp oyster beds which could have proved to be fatal.

A young man ready to end his life now has his life ahead of him, thanks to Sergeant Jeff Esterline, Corporal Jim Brueckner, and Deputy Troy Savetz.

"This is good day when you can help somebody like that," said Corporal Brueckner.

The man got medical attention and the help he needs.

"He started to break down and actually said, thank you for saving his life," said Deputy Savetz.

Read on WFLA News

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