Police Pitch in to Help Man Whose Bag Was Stolen While Saving Woman on Tracks - NBC New York
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Police Pitch in to Help Man Whose Bag Was Stolen While Saving Woman on Tracks

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A man who risked his own life to save a fellow commuter who had fallen on the tracks became a victim himself in New Jersey. Checkey Beckford reports.

    (Published Monday, May 1, 2017)

    Police in New Jersey are pitching in to help a good Samaritan after he had his backpack stolen when he leaped onto train tracks to help rescue a woman.

    Police say 34-year-old Anil Vennavalli was waiting on the Edison train station platform on Friday morning when the woman fainted and fell on the tracks. 

    Police say Vennavalli dropped his backpack and jumped on the tracks to carry the woman to safety. While he was doing that, someone took the backpack, which held his laptop computer, headphones and about $200 in cash. 

    "I saved her life that's more important than my bag," Vennavalli said.  

    Edison Police Chief Thomas Bryan says officers were taken aback after learning Vennavalli became the victim of a theft. 

    "It’s pretty despicable that somebody seeing and witnessing what was going on took the backpack," Bryan said. "We're confident we’ll find out who took the backpack."

    Bryan said police officers wanted to help Vennavalli and presented him with a $1,000 check to replace the items. 

    When Vennavalli noticed it was too much, he asked if he could pay back the difference, but Bryan said "don't worry about it."

    Bryan plans to nominate Vennavalli for a citizen award. 

    The woman was treated at a hospital and is expected to be OK.

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