Nanaimo Mounties pull distraught woman from bridge

Nanaimo Mounties pull distraught woman from bridge

Constables credited with possibly saving woman’s life in downtown Nanaimo two weeks ago

Two Nanaimo Mounties are credited with possibly saving the life of a distraught young woman after they managed to pull her off the top railing of the Bastion Street bridge.

The incident happened on the downtown Nanaimo bridge at about 9:30 p.m. May 28.

According to police, Constables Derek Carl and Jessica Barnett, with the Nanaimo RCMP, were alerted to the situation by a bystander and found a woman, who appeared to be in her late teens, perched precariously on the top railing of the bridge, looking despondent and gazing outward.

Const. Carl tried to engage her in conversation, but she would not open up to him, but Barnett was successful and spoke for some time about the struggles the woman faced, her pain and what brought her to feeling the way she was.

As Barnett listened, Carl was able to slowly walk up behind the woman and pulled her to safety. She was apprehended under the Mental Health Act and taken to Nanaimo Regional General Hospital for a psychiatric assessment.

“I was just glad to be in the right place at the right time and was able to engage her long enough, so my partner could safely pull her to safety,” Barnett said in an RCMP press release. “It was evident to both of us she was in a lot of pain. I hope she gets the help she needs to bring her out of the dark place she is in. Tonight was a good night and this is exactly why I joined the RCMP – to help people.”

Anyone in crisis who needs to speak to someone can find help 24 hours a day at 1-888-494-3888.

A list of mental health resources in the Nanaimo area is available at this link.