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Video: Va. officer dressed as Mrs. Claus coaxes distressed woman from bridge

“Call it fate. Call it right place, right time, wrong attire, but there is a reason I went that route,” Lt. Tabatha Merell said

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Photo/YouTube via WTVR News

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By Ashley Silver

FREDERICKSBURG, Va. — To spread a little holiday cheer, Fredericksburg Sheriff’s Office Lt. Tabatha Merell recently stepped into the role of Mrs. Claus at work. One night after leaving work, Merell, who was still dressed in her holiday outfit, noticed a distressed woman dangling over the edge of a bridge.

According to WTVR News, Merell initially pulled over on the bridge after noticing the woman positioned strangely, immediately feeling that something was amiss: “In that moment, she had not only her upper body over the railing but she also had lifted her left leg and had it dangling over as well. In that moment, I knew it was an emergency. It wasn’t someone looking over the water.”

Merell then called for backup and Fredericksburg PD Sgt. Lynch soon arrived.

Lynch and Merell began a conversation with the woman in an effort to coax her away from the edge of the bridge. The two officers were eventually able to get close enough to pull the woman back to safety.

“For me knowing we were able to help this female and give her comfort and reassuring voices that we were there to help her and keep her safe. It’s everything,” Lynch told the news platform.

Merell believes everything happened for a reason that night: “Call it fate. Call it right place, right time, wrong attire, but there is a reason I went that route.”