Obetz Police officer saves suicidal man

By Katelyn Sattler
Staff Writer

Messenger photo by Katelyn Sattler
Obetz Police Officer C.J Higgenbotham (center) recently prevented a suicidal man from jumping off a bridge by grabbing the man as he tried to jump. Higgenbotham was honored for his efforts at the April 24 Obetz City Council meeting. Pictured with him are Obetz Police Chief Mike Confer and Obetz Mayor Angela Kirk.

Obetz Police Officer Carl Higgenbotham recently saved the life of a suicidal man.

Higgenbotham pulled the suicidal man from the barrier of the Parsons Avenue over I-270 bridge as the man was climbing to jump from the bridge on to I-270.

“It’s outstanding work,” said Obetz City Administrator Rod Davisson. “You see what officers have to deal with on a day-to-day basis. And it’s basically traumatic and scary things all the time. And occasionally they’re lucky enough to save somebody who needs help. It’s important, and we’re extremely proud of him. We have good officers.”

In his letter of commendation to Higgenbotham, Obetz Police Chief Mike Confer wrote,

“Higgenbotham’s calm and professional demeanor helped to establish a rapport with the distraught individual. He was able to charge and gain control of the individual as he was climbing over the barrier wall to jump onto I-270. His actions ultimately prevented a tragedy from occurring.”

Confer noted Higgenbotham demonstrated exceptional teamwork and coordination with other first responders on the scene.

“He effectively communicated with dispatch and coordinated the efforts of the Columbus Fire Department and Ohio State Highway Patrol to ensure the safety of all involved,” wrote Confer. “His actions on March 16 exemplify the highest standards of professionalism and dedication to public service. His quick thinking and compassionate approach to a difficult situation undoubtedly saved a life and prevented a tragedy from occurring. He is a credit to the Obetz Police Department and an inspiration to all who serve in law enforcement.”

Obetz Mayor Angela Kirk said, “As you can tell, he rushed after the man to prevent him from going over that bridge. My God, what if our officer would’ve flipped over that bridge with the man? That’s the kind of dangerous stuff that people don’t think about. But that’s their job and they take it very seriously.”

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