Translation app helps stop suicide bid

US police talk Korean man down from ledge with help from smartphone application

Gulf News

Los Angeles: Police at Los Angeles airport turned to their smart phones to stop a Korean-speaking man from committing suicide last week, using translation apps to coax the “jumper” dangling over a ledge.

According to a police statement released on Monday, two officers responding to a call about a man hanging from the ledge of a four-story parking structure at the airport were initially stumped as they tried to communicate with the man who only spoke Korean.

“Immediately, officers Michael Dear and Daniel Krockel built a rapport with the distraught man, utilizing the translation applications on their smart phones,” the statement said.

It said that while Dear managed rescue efforts, Krockel engaged the unidentified man who was finally persuaded to climb back onto the narrow ledge of the parking structure.

“Officers coaxed the man to walk a few steps closer to look at the translation app on officer Dear’s smart phone when in one rapid succession bike officer Bart Castro followed by officer Krockel jumped onto the ledge of the parking structure and grabbed the would be suicide victim, secured him and lifted him over the wall to a group of supporting airport police officers,” the statement said.

The man was taken to a mental facility for treatment, police said.