A Raleigh police officer used sign language to talk a deaf 16-year-old off the Rock Quarry Road bridge over I-40 on Tuesday, according to the officer’s father and witnesses at the scene.
One of the North Carolina Department of Transportation cameras picked up the officer making gestures to the girl. Witnesses tell WNCN they saw the officer communicate with the girl by sign language for about 30 minutes.
“It’s good that he knew sign language, I feel like more people need to learn it,” said witness Sean Day. “It shows that he had a lot of patience and he didn’t let whatever he had on his mind interfere with what was going on.”
Raleigh police blocked all lanes near Rock Quarry Road starting around 3:30 p.m. Tuesday.
Police said the teen was on the bridge over the interstate, but police would not provide any more details.
The girl came off the bridge around 4:45 p.m. She was unharmed, police said, and was being evaluated.
Witnesses say the teen came down after the officer helped her communicate with another woman who they brought to the scene.
“The lady told her to come here and there wasn’t any hesitation soon as she saw the lady she walked to her,” said witness Estefani Martin. “The last thing I saw was that they were hugging.”
The officer, who is not being identified, always seems to “be in the right place to save the day,” his father says.