Charleston paramedics pulled a partially clothed man from the Kanawha River this morning after he jumped from the South Side Bridge.
Witnesses saw the 39-year-old man walk onto the bridge around 9:17 a.m., pull off his shoes and sweatpants and jump into the river, Lt. S.E. Blankenship with the Charleston Police Department.
He then swam to the south bank of the river where Charleston police officers and medics found him clinging to a bush, Blankenship said.
The man sustained no obvious injuries, but that does not mean he was unharmed.
"The paramedics said it was very possible that he could have internal injuries," Blankenship said.
He is currently being treated at Charleston Area Medical Center's General Hospital. He is alert and talking, Blankenship said.
"But he's very cold," he said.
Blankenship said the man walked out of the Prestera Center earlier in the morning. Officials at the mental health facility informed the dispatcher that the man was suicidal.
"He's had suicide attempts in the past," he said.
The man likely will not be charged with any criminal offense because of the incident, Blankenship said. He will undergo a mental evaluation, however.
The bridge is suspended about 100 feet above the water, according to Tom Elkins, an engineer with Charleston.