During Friday night's rainstorm, a 24-year-old man had to be rescued from nearly drowning in the Hudson River.
Police got a 911 call just after 10 p.m. that evening reporting that a man was struggling in the water. When police arrived at the location, near West 132nd Street, they saw Khalid Esmail, 24, about 60 feet from the pier, struggling to stay afloat and in severe distress. Esmail was naked, and it appears he may have jumped into the river of his own accord.
Three officers jumped into the river amidst the rain and wind, and one was able to grab onto Esmail, who'd lost consciousness and started sinking. The three got him to shore, and EMS transported him to St. Luke's Hospital.
The New York Post reports that Esmail is (or was) a student at Columbia University, had struggled in the past with his mental health, and posted two photos of the Hudson River and a painting of an exit sign hours before the incident. He may have been on drugs, according to the tabloid.
Coincidentally, the man arrested after taunting police for over an hour while pacing naked on a Times Square structure earlier this week is also a Columbia student, though he's currently on a gap year.
Esmail was in stable condition as of Saturday, and none of the officers involved in his rescue sustained any injuries. He told the Post he was "very grateful" to the officers for helping him out of the river, and wasn't sure why he jumped in in the first place.