Suburban police stop distraught teen from jumping in front of train

A teenage girl trying to throw herself in front of a train was tackled and saved by a Waukegan police officer early Monday morning.

The dramatic rescue was captured on police body camera video.

"I'm just thinking 'get to her.' ...yeah, 100 percent. I thought she was going to try and go onto the train tracks,” said Waukegan Police Officer Christopher Harris.

Harris and Andrew Orozco were on patrol around 2 a.m. when a frantic call came into the 911 center from the sister of a 17-year-old girl.

"Reported that her family member was threatening suicide, and was at one of our local cemeteries, and was threatening suicide by stepping in front of a train,” said Waukegan Police Chief Wayne Walles.

Police were able to ping the distraught girl's cellphone, which showed she was at a railroad crossing at South Avenue.

"As we pull up it was like a movie. The arms start coming down, the lights start blinking. And here comes the train,” said Orozco.

While Orozco tried to signal the engineer with his flashlight, Harris went looking for the girl and quickly found her hiding behind a utility box along the tracks.

"I believe I told her [Hey come here] twice. The second time I saw her not stopping, continuing to walk towards the tracks, I just sprinted towards her and tackled her,” said Harris.

The officers handcuffed the girl who was taken to a psychiatric hospital for evaluation.

It all went down very quickly. Only eight minutes went by from the time they got the 911 call to the time they were able to find and apprehend the girl.

"I'm extremely proud of our officers day in and day out. This is just another example of how they serve the community,” Walles said.

But the officers say don't call them heroes.

"We signed up for it. Not to be too cliché but we're just police officers doing our job,” Harris said.

“It worked out. Those are the times it makes all the bad worth it,” Orozco said.

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