Award for Harrogate police officer who stopped two young girls jumping from railway bridge

Police across the county have been recognised for their special efforts while on duty.
Police across the county have been recognised for their special efforts while on duty.
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A Harrogate policeman has been recognised for his compassion, after he saved two young teenage girls from jumping off a railway bridge in the town.

PC Xavi Lopez was awarded the bronze Compassion Award at North Yorkshire Police's second annual awards ceremony on Friday (November 4).

It was during a routine patrol when a PC Lopez, an officer still in his probationary period, received a call for immediate assistance.

A suicidal 14 year old girl and her cousin had been discovered sitting on the edge of a railway bridge in Harrogate.

When PC Lopez arrived at the scene, after initial resistance, he persuaded the girls to allow him to approach them.

Suddenly a train appeared heading for the bridge and one girl, who PC Lopez knew was a suicide risk with a history of self-harm, said she intended to jump.

Realising that the girls were both in immediate danger, PC Lopez made a split-second decision to grab hold of both girls to pull them to safety.

Although the two girls’ combined weight was more than his own, and put his safety in danger, PC Lopez’s brave actions saved both of them from serious injury.  

The awards ceremony, which was held at the Hospitium in York, was introduced last year to celebrate the achievements of officers and staff.