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Tow Driver Talks Man Off Bridge

A tow truck driver helped to defuse a tense situation in Crystal City (Virginia) yesterday (Wednesday) morning.

Police were dispatched to the area for a man standing on the edge of a Route 1 overpass. It was unclear why the man was standing there, but there was concern that he might jump to the roadway below.

Video shared with ARLnow, below, shows the shirtless man gesticulating wildly while standing above 15th Street S. A police source told ARLnow that a driver with Advanced Towing stopped and “talked this guy down.”

Reached via email, Advanced owner John O’Neill confirmed the report.

“One of my drivers… noticed a man [who] walked out on an overpass,” he said. “Ryan called 911 but approached the man and talked him into not doing anything dumb.”

Police were later able to catch up with the man and get him help. A police spokeswoman described the incident as a “mental health call for service.”

“At approximately 9:26 a.m. on June 29, an off-duty officer observed a man walking along northbound Richmond Highway,” Arlington County Police Department Public Information Officer Ashley Savage tells ARLnow. “Additional calls to the Emergency Communications Center stated the man was standing near the edge of the overpass in the area of 15th St. S. and S. Eads St. The individual subsequently left the area and was located by responding officers in the Crystal City Shops.”

“We are always cast in a negative light but if my driver had not been doing his job this man may have hurt himself,” he said. “I’m really proud of my employee for intervening.”

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