COPY-Off-duty Evanston officer saves man from jumping off parking garage

An off-duty Evanston police officer saved a distraught man from jumping off a parking garage Sunday night in the north suburb.

Detective Ken Carter was leaving a restaurant in the 1800 block of Maple Avenue about 5 p.m. when one of his family members saw a man standing on the ledge of the top floor of a parking garage, according to a statement from Evanston police.

The detective notified the dispatch center, then headed to the top floor of the garage as responding officers arrived, police said.

The man was "extremely distraught" and said he was going to kill himself by jumping off the ledge, police said. He threw his wallet and cell phone to ground below.

Two detectives tried to talk the man down, but "it was increasingly apparent that he was not going to come down willingly and that he fully intended to take his own life," police said.

As the detectives distracted the man, Carter crawled along the ledge behind him and grabbed him until other officers were able to pull him to safety, police said. The man was taken to Evanston Hospital for treatment.

Carter is a 12-year veteran of the police department who is currently assigned to the Neighborhood Enforcement Team, police said.

"The Evanston Police Department would like to commend Detective Carter for his initiative and selfless actions that resulted in the saving of a human life," according to the statement.