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Alleged thief survives 200-foot fall

May 22, 2011 at 3:33 PM

ELIZABETH, N.J., May 22 (UPI) -- A Staten Island, N.Y., man out on bail for allegedly stealing an expensive handbag survived a 200-foot jump after allegedly stealing another one, police say.

New York Port Authority police were chasing Darin Hickman, 46, after he allegedly shoplifted a tony Louis Vuitton purse from a mall in New Jersey. Just as Hickman got close to the Goethals Bridge in Elizabeth, N.J., he rammed a police car, causing his Mitsubishi Diamante to catch fire, the New York Post reported Sunday.

Hickman jumped out of the car and bolted down the highway and then he made a totally unexpected move, police said.

"Suddenly, he makes a hard left -- and falls 200 feet!" an officer on the scene marveled. "I still, to this moment, can't believe what I saw. This mope threw himself off a bridge, and has no external injuries and seems to be fine."

When police and firefighters discovered Hickman alive and breathing, all he wanted to know was, "How's my car?" the officer said.

The alleged robber was out on bail for stealing a comparable Louis Vuitton bag worth $2,500 last week.

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