HACKENSACK, N.J. -- A teacher who was armed with a sharp object, hanging out the window of her Hackensack apartment screaming for help and believed to be suicidal was rescued this morning by members of the Bergen County Regional SWAT team and the Hackensack police department.
Shortly after 8 a.m., the Hackensack Police Department was contacted by a neighbor who overheard a woman screaming for help in their apartment complex at 355 West Pleasantview Avenue. A band of city police officers arrived in short order at the residence where they were guided by the woman’s screams that echoed from the second-floor window, which was left wide open despite the 40-degree chill. The apartment door was barricaded with a couch, desk and other heavy objects and the woman -- who police say is a teacher in the area -- was hanging out of the window and believed to be armed with a knife or scissors.
Police said the disturbed woman, in her early 40s, yelled repeatedly that she wouldn’t hurt her child and that the cops were there to kill her. Police later learned the child lives out of state with their father.
Fearful they had a jumper on their hands, crisis negotiators attempted to talk the woman down, but were unsuccessful. Two Bergen County Regional SWAT members along with City Police Officer Felix Katsaroans entered the second floor window via a ladder and grabbed the woman.
Police secured several knives from the apartment while a waiting ambulance transported the woman to Bergen New Bridge Medical Center for a psychological evaluation.
The Hackensack Police Department extends their gratitude to the following agencies for their assistance: Hackensack Fire Department, Bergen County Regional SWAT and crisis negotiators, Bergen County Sheriff's Department, Bergen County Prosecutor's Office, and the Hackensack University Medical Center Ambulance.
"Because of outstanding cooperation and communication by all the agencies, no one got hurt and the woman is getting the help that she needs,” said Hackensack Detective Captain Darrin DeWitt. "Everyone involved did a great job."