Secaucus Police Detective Lt. Michael Torres is our #BlueFriday honoree for this week.
Detective Lt. Torres spent two hours at the cold Hackensack River negotiating with a mentally disturbed man who was threatening to harm himself.
The incident started when the 51-year-old slammed his vehicle into a utility truck on Paterson Plank Road. He then drove down the road and through Trolley Park, right into the river. Lt. Torres wasted no time, getting into the water and using his skill, training, and calm demeanor to keep the man talking and prevent him from hurting himself.
Officers from Secaucus, East Rutherford, Carlstadt, and the New Jersey State Police surrounded the man and prevented him from swimming away. Read the full story HERE.
This story speaks to two things. First, we are not doing a good enough job of proactively addressing mental health. How many people are out there who have no place to turn and no one to help them, reacting to an incident that could have ended in tragedy seems to be the norm.
The second thing this incident shows is how well-trained our cops across the state are and the effective way they combine training with the courage to solve problems and save lives.