COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) – – A man who jumped off the 14th Street bridge into the Chattahoochee River Saturday afternoon has been rescued, the Columbus Fire and EMS chief tells News 3.
Several witnesses saw a person jump from the 14th Street pedestrian bridge into the Chattahoochee River about 5:35 p.m.
Columbus Fire and EMS immediately responded. Rescue boats were put into the river. About 30 minutes later a man could be seen on one of the islands between the rapids below the 13th Street bridge.
The man, wearing black shorts and no shirt was taken out of the river. He did not appear to be injured and was put into a Columbus Police car on Bay Avenue.
Police and Fire and EMS Batallion Chief Bryan Watson questioned the man, who appeared to deny he was the jumper. Witnesses had conflicting accounts. Watson, a veteran river rescue incident commander, did not call off the search and considered putting additional crews on the water.
Columbus Fire and EMS Interim Chief Greg Lang tells News 3 that fire officials went to the Muscogee County Jail to question the man police had in custody.
“We told him we were about to put crews in the river — and it’s dangerous when you do that — and if anyone was injured he would face additional charges,” Lang said. “The man then admitted he jumped.”
The man has been identified as JB Black. He has been charged with personal floating device required on Chattahoochee and city disorderly conduct.