Connecticut State Trooper rescues suicidal teen on highway

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Only News 8 got the exclusive video showing Connecticut State Trooper, Sgt. Ryan Hennessey racing to get out of his car on I-84 in Waterbury near The Mixmaster, blocking off traffic, and running to the other side to make sure a 16-year-old girl was safe.

It happened last week. Emergency dispatchers at Troop A in Southbury took the emergency call then saw the girl on the highway via state traffic cameras.

“Those are always very tense moments because what you want to do is get somebody out there as fast as you possibly can,” can Betsy Brennan, lead dispatcher at Troop A. She calls Sgt. Hennessey a hero.

“He saves lives every day,” she said. “They all do.”

Police say the 16-year-old girl had told friends she wanted to kill herself. Sgt. Hennessey got there in time for that to not happen.

Lt. Christopher Bartolotta, Sgt. Hennessey’s mentor when he first joined the state police, says he’s proud of how the sergeant answered the call so quickly and the bravery he displayed running toward the girl on the highway to save her life.

“There’s a complete stranger risking his life to make sure someone is safe,” Lt. Bartolotta said.

Sgt. Hennessey didn’t want to speak to News 8 about his heroics. His colleagues say that’s because he’s not the type of guy to toot his own horn.

“He’s a good guy, quiet,” Betsy said. “Always a just doing my job type of guy.”

Lt. Bartolotta says it was a job well done, and he’s proud of Sgt. Hennessey for showing the heart of a Connecticut State Trooper.

“If we do our job, it becomes emotional afterwards and then you move on and get ready for the next one,” said Lt. Bartolotta. “We don’t want there to be a next one.”

The lieutenant says the girl is doing well and getting the help she needs. He says we can all learn from this experience.

“Don’t let someone fall through the cracks,” he said. “Don’t let someone make the ultimate decision that this is the way they need to go….talking to somebody, whether or not you believe it, people care about you. People love you. Take advantage of the options because life is too short.”

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