Police use helicopter, scuba gear to extract man from shallow lake in Prospect Park

The NYPD Aviation unit responded to reports of an emotionally distrubed person in Prospect Park Lake on August 1.
Photo by Paul Martinka

Scuba cops rappelled from a helicopter into Prospect Park Lake amid the very dramatic rescue of an allegedly “erratic” swimmer on Aug. 1.

Parkgoers gazed in awe as the police chopper swooped into action, its rotors sending ripples through the usually placid lake as an action squad of two police scuba divers descended on the clothed swimmer about a hundred feet off the coast of Brooklyn’s Backyard.

Police claim the man acted in an “erratic fashion” as he plunged into Prospect Park’s largest body of water — an abyss that descends to an interminable maximum depth of seven feet — shortly before noon on Thursday, ignoring park rules that forbid swimming in the lake, and not to mention the peril of blue-green algae, a cyanobacteria that produces two forms of deadly toxins, and has plagued the lake every summer since 2013.

New York’s Finest dive team dutifully terminated the man’s afternoon swim by dragging him to the shore, where officers strapped him to a waiting gurney, before paramedics ferried him to Park Slope’s Methodist Hospital for psychiatric evaluation, cops said.

Reach reporter Aidan Graham at agraham@schnepsmedia.com or by calling (718) 260–4577. Follow him at twitter.com/aidangraham95.

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