NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A dramatic rescue on the Kosciuszko Bridge was caught on video Monday.
NYPD detectives Meghan Kinsella and Steven Stefanakos spent nearly two hours talking to a Brooklyn woman who was distraught over her impending divorce.
The 45-year-old woman was threatening to jump from the bridge, 150 feet above Newtown Creek.
“I tried to convince her that no matter what, we would be with her every step of the way,” said Kinsella, a 14-year veteran of the force who worked as a domestic violence officer for more than nine years. “He would talk, and I would talk. I didn’t even realize I was there for two hours. I was completely focused on her.”
Kinsella, who had once before talked someone off a bridge, happened to be nearby on another assignment and wanted to help.
Said Stefanakos, a 24-year veteran who has spent 20 years with the Emergency Service Unit: “I told her, ‘I don’t know what is going on and what is happening with you, but give us a chance to talk to you.'”
They persuaded the woman to give life another chance and climb to safety so she could be with her children, CBS2’s Emily Smith reported.
While police want to protect the woman’s identity, they did say she is an immigrant from Poland and a mother to a 10-year-old girl and 14-year-old boy.
“The biggest part seemed to be for us is when we started talking about family and some of the things that she was going through and some of the things that we had gone through in our lives,” Stefanakos said. “And I think that’s where things actually started to change, and we were really able to reel her in … and getting her to trust us.”
“I’m a mom, so I just wanted to get her home safe with her family,” Kinsella said.
“The first thing I did was I actually grabbed her, hugged her and kissed her and said, ‘You’re so brave,'” Kinsella added. “And she goes, ‘You’re going to help me. You said you were going to help me.’ And I said, ‘I’ll help you as much as I can.'”
“It’s a huge relief,” Stefanakos said. “It actually is euphoric because you made a difference in somebody’s life, right there and then.”
Police Commissioner Bill Bratton tweeted Tuesday, “Remarkable cops doing remarkable work yesterday on the Kosciuszko Bridge epitomize the Finest.”
The woman was taken to Elmhurst Hospital for a psychological evaluation.