A potentially life-saving mission was underway in Hartford this weekend. Police made sure no one spent the night outside in the extreme cold.
“No one should be left out in the cold. These are bitter, nasty conditions,” says Lt. Gabriel Laureano from Hartford Police.
That’s why Laureano and his team ventured out with temperatures around zero.
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They were canvassing the city and the first stop was an I-84 overpass. It’s one of the places known as a spot for people who are homeless to camp out. And sure enough there was a man perched above.
“Bud, you’re shaking! It’s freezing,” Laureano yelled to the man.
The man said his name is Eugene and he was reluctant to leave. Minutes ticked by and after a lot of convincing he finally climbed down for offers of a warm refuge and water.
It had been days since the 64-year-old had eaten.
The officers stopped at Burger King and used their own money to buy Eugene burgers and fries.
Then it was off to the Hartford Rescue Mission. For at least one bitter night, Eugene had somewhere warm and safe to sleep.
“I’m not going to forget about it. This isn’t a one-time thing for me with him. We got to make sure we find him something,” says Laureano.
At last check, Hartford police found eight people on Saturday night and took them to the warming centers or friends' homes. Officers promised to stay out searching as long it took to make sure everyone was off the streets.