Lufkin Police officers save man from suicide hanging attempt

LUFKIN, TX (News Release) - Through persistence and fast action, Lufkin Police Department dispatchers and officers saved a life. Due to privacy issues, certain details concerning the incident, such as the name of the involved citizen and information that would directly identify him, will not be released but information concerning the actions of the dispatchers and officers are detailed below.

At approximately 11:30 PM on Friday, March 04, 2011, Lufkin Police Department dispatchers received a call from a man who stated that he intended to end his life by hanging himself. The caller refused to provide details about his identity or his location but told the dispatchers that he had placed a rope around his neck. By asking the right questions and paying close attention to the few answers given, the dispatchers gathered enough information from the caller to provide the officers the color of the caller's residence and the name of the street on which the residence is located.

Using the information provided by dispatchers, Lufkin Police Department officers responded to the caller's street and found the first residence of the proper color but quickly determined that it was not the correct residence, so they continued to the next properly-colored residence and found information to identity it as the caller's. The dispatchers informed the responding officers that the caller was no longer responding to their questions and that sounds of the man chocking could be heard through the telephone.

The officers found the front door to the residence unlocked and searched the residence for the caller, finding him in the garage; he had hanged himself using a rope secured to the rafters of the garage. The officers used a pocket knife to cut the rope, lowered the caller to the floor, and removed the rope from around his neck. The caller was not breathing and the officers were unable to detect his pulse, so they began cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and requested medical personal to their location. Once the caller began breathing on his own and a faint pulse was detected, the officers discontinued CPR and the caller was transported by Lufkin Fire Department personnel to a Lufkin-area hospital.

Emergency room staff treated the caller and a few hours later the caller was able to hold a conversation with officers and appeared to not have suffered significant injury, but the caller remained at the hospital for testing and evaluation.

Detective JB Smith, Public Information Officer for Lufkin PD, said; "the Department doesn't have any additional information concerning the caller's medical condition but we want to recognize the life-saving efforts of the dispatchers and officers. Dispatchers Ashley Denby and DeeDee Dalbalcon, Officers Mark Anderson, Clay VanEman, and Trent Burfine, and Sergeant Dale Jowell each exemplify the professionalism of the employees of Lufkin Police Department."