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Off-Duty Cop Saves Suicidal Man By Asking For A Hug

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- Mayor Bill de Blasio and the NYPD are commending a cop who talked a suicidal man out of killing himself at the Queens Center Mall last week.

Officer Christian Campoverde was off-duty and shopping with his family at the mall when a distraught man pushed past him and headed towards the food court, WCBS 880's Stephanie Colombini reported.

"I saw people's reactions, they were angry towards him," Campoverde said. "Me and my wife look at it differently -- we saw a man who needed help." 

The man was set to jump off a third-floor balcony when Campoverde intervened.

"I actually told him, 'would it be okay if I gave you a hug? Would you want a hug?'" Campoverde said. "And he said yesm, he leaped into my arms, he cried."

The man eventually calmed down and was taken by emergency medical services for evaluation.

Campoverde said he had completed the NYPD's new crisis intervention team training program last week. The program teaches officers handle conflicts with the mentally ill.

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