Training helps Pascagoula police officers save lives of those in distress

Training helps Pascagoula police officers save lives of those in distress

PASCAGOULA, Miss. (WLOX) - Tense moments on the Pascagoula River Bridge Wednesday morning after a distraught woman threatened to jump.

Police officers were ready to take all the time necessary to talk her away from the ledge, but when she put her other leg over the railing, it was time to take action.

Police video camera footage shows her being tackled to safety.

“The officers showed great patience and poise from our training and experience,” said Lt. Patrick Brandle. “These were three officers that had many years between them on duty and had probably been through similar situations before.”

Sixteen-year veteran Chris Meadows was the one who pulled her to safety.

“I was surrounded by a great group of guys,” he said. “I had other officers up there with me. I just happened to be able to position myself in the ideal spot while the other officers were able to communicate and keep her talking.”

This is the second time this week Meadows has had to help someone under duress. Nineteen-year-old Noah Daigle had been missing for 18 days when Pascagoula Police got the call. Daigle, who has autism and is non-verbal, was found Sunday after a tip from someone at the Pascagoula Walmart. He had been missing from his Louisiana home since Sept. 18 with his car found near the Mississippi/Alabama border three days later and authorities in all three states searching for Daigle.

Police did not have to use force - just a lot of patience and talking.

“It’s very important. That’s why we do it,” Meadows said. “We train and train and train so when the incident comes up in front of us, we know how to deal with it.”

Lt. Patrick Brandle said it takes time and hard work to be ready, and in the end, it’s worth it.

“It was an all-hands-on-deck type situation, and every department between Louisiana and Alabama was aware of this young man missing,” he said. “And it was pretty awesome that we happened to put him and his grandfather back together.”

The woman on the bridge was taken to the hospital for evaluation. Meadows was assisted on the bridge by officers Scott Ladnier and Jackie Wimberly. Officer Corey Selover assisted with the missing teen case.

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