Man yells for help; disappears near Ala. River - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

Man yells for help; disappears near Ala. River

A man stands along the river bank just before walking away. A man stands along the river bank just before walking away.
A rescue team near the bank where the man was last seen. A rescue team near the bank where the man was last seen.
Antonio Austin called 911 after hearing a man yell for help. Antonio Austin called 911 after hearing a man yell for help.
MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) -

A bizarre situation unfolded across from the Harriott II Riverboat along the Alabama River Friday afternoon. Authorities, and the man who witnessed the event, aren't sure what to make of it.

As Antonio Austin and a friend admired the riverfront during a sightseeing visit, they noticed a figure across the river. 

Austin said the man was yelling for help, but he wasn't convinced that it wasn't a joke until the man climbed down the embankment and slipped into the water. "He was waving...and saying send help," Austin explained.

Fearing the water would be too cold for the unidentified man to successfully swim across, Austin said he pulled out his cell phone and dialed 911. Police and rescue responded within minutes. A boat was launched and an ambulance was nearby in case it was needed.

But the man, wearing a blue or gray shirt, climbed back out of the water and walked up to some bushes. A WSFA 12 News camera was on scene and captured video of the man as he stood on the bank. He then disappeared behind vegetation and hasn't been seen since.

Montgomery Fire Rescue launched a boat and sent a team across the river, but the man was not found.

Police on scene could not comment on the situation, but there was speculation that the man may have feared he'd be in trouble after seeing all the police and made the decision to walk off.

Copyright 2011 WSFA 12 News. All rights reserved.

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