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Chandler officer talks man out of jumping off bridge by offering hug

PHOENIX — A Chandler police officer successfully talked a man out of jumping off a bridge, as seen in body camera footage released by the department Wednesday.

The incident in late March began when a 26-year-old man climbed over a protective railing on a pedestrian bridge and hung over traffic on the Loop 101 Price Freeway.

Officer Aaron Little responded to the scene and told other officers to stay off the bridge to avoid scaring the man.

Little told the man his name and offered to give him a hug.

“Don’t you want that hug? Then come up here. I will give you that hug, man, I will give it to you. I’m not lying,” Little said.

Eventually, the man climbed back over the railing and joined Little on the bridge. Little hugged the crying man and escorted him to his patrol car.

“While this incident is extraordinary, the compassion Officer Little showed is a common occurrence with the men & women of the Chandler Police Department,” the department said in a Facebook post.

Editor’s note: If you or anyone you know is struggling with suicidal thoughts, call Teen Lifeline at 800-248-8336 or the National Suicide Prevention Hotline 24/7 at 800-273-8255. 

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