Father Of Man Who Drowned In Back Cove Sues First Responders

The father of a man who jumped into Portland's Back Cove and drowned during a mental health crisis is suing first responders who watched from shore, saying they didn't do enough to stop the tragedy.

Eric Cohen, 25, was experiencing a psychosis when he attacked his girlfriend and a man who tried to help her near the Miss Portland Diner and then fled naked into the water, the lawsuit says.

The lawsuit contends first responders should've acted to help Cohen when he was in waist-deep water 30 feet from shore.

Instead, they waited for the arrival of the fireboat, which took 11 minutes, the lawsuit said. By the time it arrived, Cohen was face down in the water as first responders waited on shore. The medical examiner concluded Cohen died from drowning and hypothermia, the lawsuit said.

City officials declined to comment. The lawsuit names the city, two police sergeants and an unidentified Portland firefighter.