Hoboken police officers rescued a woman who fell into the Hudson River through a hole in a pier near 12th Street after climbing a fence to take a picture, Chief Kenneth Ferrante said.
“Excellent life saving effort by @HobokenPD midnight patrol: Lieut @CostelloMJr, Sgts. D. DiMartino & Roman @_Robroman,& P.O.’s@ BarbroJames, @dukemccourt Straten, & Castellano at 3:52 am.,” Ferrante tweeted this morning.
“They rescued a 24 yr old female from Berkeley Heights from the Hudson River after she had climbed a fence to go take a picture from a pier in the area of 12 St. & proceeded to fall into a hole that she didn’t see due to the darkness and snow. The officers utilizing water bags and life ropes went down into the hole & into the frigid waters to rescue her from the water!”
This afternoon, Hoboken Det. Lt. Danilo Cabrera released more information.
At approximately 3:32 a.m. Saturday morning, the Hoboken Police Department received a 911 call about a woman who fell into the Hudson River near Pier 13.
The woman, 23, from Berkeley Heights, was out with friends and her brother when they wanted to get a better view of New York City and take pictures.
The victim climbed over a railing and due to the snow on the ground, she did not see the gaps between the pier and the dock in this area that is closed off to the public. Her brother attempted to rescue her, but was unsuccessful and followed up by calling 911.
As the officers were searching the area, Sgt. Robert Roman and Police Officer Michael Straten were waved down by a man in the area of 12th and Sinatra Drive North. He identified himself as the caller and brother of the female victim who fell into the water.
Roman grabbed his water rescue bag from his police vehicle and they both jumped over the railing and onto the pier. They immediately located a hole in the ground of the pier that dropped more than ten feet deep and into the Hudson River.
The victim was submerged waist high in the water and was clinging to a piece of metal. A water bag was deployed and she was able to secure herself with it as other officers arrived.
Lt. Michael Costello, now on scene, took command as ESU Sgt. David DiMartino, ESU Police Officer Francis McCourt, ESU Police Officer James Barbro, and Police Officer Jesse Castellano assisted with the rescue.
A second water rescue bag was deployed, along with a life preserver ring from the ESU truck. It took a collaborative effort with all officers putting their safety at risk to save the victim from drowning.
DiMartino and Straten had to reach half their body into the hole, with Barbro, Roman, and Castellano holding onto their legs so they will not fall into the river.
This allowed them to get a rescue ring around the victim and with further help from Costello and McCourt and they were ultimately able to pull the victim out.
Once the victim was pulled out of the river, she was treated by Hoboken EMS and transported to Hoboken University Medical Center.
Ferrante also said on Twitter that “charges are being explored” for the woman who fell into the water and that her identity will be released if charges are filed.
Editor’s note: This story was updated with new information.