Police investigate reports of possibly suicidal teen on bridge hours before council meeting

PORT ANGELES — A possibly suicidal 15-year-old was reported Tuesday on one of the Eighth Street bridges two hours before the Port Angeles City Council considered erecting a higher barrier on the bridges.

Two people called Port Angeles police, one who had talked with the teen on the phone and one who had seen her while she was on the Valley Creek Bridge. Both considered her suicidal, according to police reports.

Four officers responded to the call and found her at Fourth and Cherry streets, about eight blocks north of the Valley Creek bridge.

“The girl agreed to talk to a counselor,” Deputy Chief Jason Viada said Wednesday.

A police report on the incident was not written, Viada said.

The four officers who responded to the call were unavailable for comment Wednesday.

Had the teen jumped from the bridge, she would have been the fourth since June.

Ashley Ann Wishart, 15, a Port Angeles High School sophomore, jumped to her death off the Valley Creek Bridge the morning of Nov. 13, sparking a renewed community interest in placing barriers on the bridges.

The 15-year-old girl involved in the incident Tuesday was not injured, police said.

Her mother took her to Peninsula Behavioral Health four blocks east of the Valley Creek bridge, according to the police department’s call-for-service report.

From Nov. 20, 2016, to Nov. 20, 2017, there were 263 calls for service designated as suicide attempts or suicide threats in the city, and six suicides, including three from the Eighth Street bridges, Viada said.

Of the 263 calls, 14 were in the area of the Eighth Street bridges, the 200 to 800 block of Eighth Street.

From Nov. 20, 2015, to Nov. 20, 2016, there were 248 calls for service designated as suicide threats or attempts in the city, and two suicides, neither of which was from an Eighth Street bridge.

Thirteen of the attempts and threats were in the 200 to 800 block of West Eighth Street, where the bridges are located.

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Senior Staff Writer Paul Gottlieb can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 55650, or at [email protected].

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