Suicide is never easy to talk about, but one Peoria police officer is sharing a story that may help thousands of teens.
September is National Suicide Prevention Month, and earlier this year he was called out to a girl attempting to take her own life. But that officer was able to change her tune.
He may write tickets for his job, but what he likes to write are songs.
“It’s my passion and this is an example of why I do it,” said Peoria police Ofc. Bradford Knights.
In fact, he’s been doing it since he was a little boy, but never did Knights think his two worlds would collide and save a teen’s life.
“She had climbed out her bedroom window onto the roof,” said Knights.
He and his officer’s body cameras were rolling as they were dispatched to a girl attempting to take her own life. So they started trying to connect with her.
“We tried a couple different things that weren’t working,” he said. “We were kind of out of, seemed like out of options at that point.”
And then he saw it.
“I did notice a picture of Bob Marley and I also noticed a guitar in the room,” said Knights.
Then you hear and see this on the body camera.
“If I play it a little for you will you come in? Alright, let’s give this a shot here. It’s a little out of tune,” he said.
Knights played his original song “Medicine Man” and struck a different chord with the teen.
“She cried,” said Knights.
“Happy tears?” asked reporter Briana Whitney.
“Um, I think it was a connection that was made and that’s pretty special,” said Knights.
And it worked.
“How’s that? I wrote that!” said Knights in the body camera footage.
And the girl giggles.
“We got a deal, right?” Ofc. Knights askes her in the video.
She nods and starts to come inside.
“I appreciate it,” said Knights.
The girl then thanks him.
It’s the part of police work people don’t usually see. And when she told Knights "thank you," you can bet that was the best music to his ears.
“I don’t care if I never play that song again. But just the fact that this was able to help her out that day, that means everything to me,” said Ofc. Knights.