A Placerville man leaped from the Carson Road overpass onto eastbound Highway 50 Wednesday afternoon, but not before a good Samaritan tried to talk him down.
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The 51-year-old man, whose name was not released, was standing on the railing of the overpass when he was approached by Audrey Stokes, 25, of Placerville, said Placerville Police Capt. Mike Scott.
Stokes, according to Scott, intervened and tried to help the man.
“The Samaritan grabbed the individual to keep him from jumping,” he said. “But he pushed off of her and she lost her grip.”
Bill Scales, former Mountain Democrat photo editor, was there when the man jumped.
“I saw the fellow standing there,” he said. “This lady was talking to him, trying to hold him back.”
Scales was able to make out part of their conversation.
“All I could hear was her asking, ‘Are you OK? Are you OK?,'” he said. “And he kept saying, ‘No, no, no.'”
The man did jump, however, and fell an estimated 25 feet onto the highway below where he landed in the No. 2 lane, according to Scott.
Deshell Rodriguez, store manager of nearby Off Broadway Fashions, also witnessed the incident.
Rodriguez said she called authorities while her sister ran down to tend to the jumper, she said.
El Dorado County sheriff’s deputies, as well as Placerville police and California Highway Patrol officers all responded to the scene.
“When they arrived, he was in the shoulder,” said Scott.
The man sustained substantial leg injuries, according to police. He was airlifted to Sutter Roseville Medical Center for treatment and was placed on an involuntary psychiatric hold.
“(The Samaritans) definitely gave a valiant effort here,” said Scott.
E-mail Jim Ratajczak at [email protected] or call 530-344-5071.