Firefighters pull body from river

BEACON FALLS — Firefighters pulled the body of the man, who ran from Waterbury police Friday night, out of the Naugatuck River Saturday afternoon.

A couple of kayakers spotted what they thought was a body at about 5 p.m. Saturday in the river in the area of the intersection of South Main Street and Noe Place, which is south of the Depot Street Bridge,  Beacon Hose Company No. 1 spokesman Jeremy Rodorigo.

The kayakers went to the firehouse, where the annual River Fest was winding down, and reported it to firefighters. Rodorigo said the department deployed its swift water rescue team and learned that it was indeed the body of a deceased man. Firefighters pulled the man, who was caught in debris along the west bank, out of the river.

Rodorigo said the department was aware that Waterbury police were searching for a man who jumped into the river Friday night. Firefighters contacted Waterbury police, who came to Beacon Falls to retrieve the body.

Waterbury police are not releasing the man’s name until his autopsy is completed on Monday, said Acting Deputy Chief Christopher Corbett of the Waterbury Police Department.

The man tried to swim across the river about 9 p.m. Friday after a police officer who was responding to a call at the Brass House Restaurant spotted the man walking in the middle of South Main Street and asked if he was OK, police said.

The officer instructed the man to get out of the roadway, but the man did not listen; instead, he ran down an embankment toward the river and jumped in, police said.

The officer yelled for the man to come back to land because the water was high and the current was unusually strong, police said. The man never came back.

Police said he was in his early 30s, but released no further details.

The Waterbury Republican American contributed to this article.

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