By Kym Gable


RANKIN (KDKA) — A local community wanted to show three police officers how grateful they were for them rescuing a 16-year-old girl who almost took her own life.

The women police officers will tell you it is just a routine part of the job.

But the mayor and community believed their actions were worthy of praise.

(Photo Credit: Kym Gable/KDKA)

“These outstanding officers did an amazing job for us, so we just wanted to thank them tonight,” Rankin Police Chief Ryan Wooten said.

And on Tuesday night, an official proclamation came down during the borough council meeting.

On Jan. 26, the police officers were alerted to a young person on the Rankin Bridge with no coat or shoes.

The teen was already climbing over the railing.

“I just threw my patrol car in park, ran across the bridge and snatched her up and bear-hugged her,” said Rankin police officer Yvonne Battiste, who was the first to approach the teen.

“It could be my kid out there or anybody’s kid,” Rankin officer Latisha Cassidy said. “So mother mode kicked in on top of being a police officer when I realized it was a child. … And then she just started crying.”

First sobbing, then came the expression of thanks for the women in blue.

“I got to be part of a miracle,” Braddock officer Jamie Speelman said.

Chief Wooten said the girl is getting help and treatment

The officers have been checking in with the teen.