'Suicidal' mannequin taken down after numerous 911 calls

'Suicidal' Mannequin Causes Confusion In Iowa
'Suicidal' Mannequin Causes Confusion In Iowa

A car dealership billboard meant to get people to take the leap and buy a new vehicle made motorists think a man was going to take a leap to his death.

According to the Hawk Eye, a number of drivers in Des Moines Dounty, Iowa dialed 911 after spotting what they thought was a suicidal man sitting on top of a billboard, when in actuality it was a mannequin advertising a local car dealership.

The billboard read, "From up here, I can see Deery of Burlington," but all drivers saw was a man in desperate need of help. Last Monday, sheriff's deputies arrived at the scene and tried to talk the mannequin off the ledge.

One sheriff told the Associated Press, "It was dark, they couldn't see. They assumed it was someone jumping, but at some point they realized the person was not responding to their commands. One of them pulled out their binoculars and realized it was a mannequin."

Officials never asked the Deery car dealership to take down the advertisement, but after learning about the 9-1-1 calls, the owner decided to remove the billboard.

"I hate to take it down," Brad Deery told Reuters. "But in the interest of public safety, I decided to."

This isn't the first time a billboard made motorists believe they were witnessing a suicide. Back in 2012, a Las Vegas billboard featuring a mannequin hanging from a noose with the text "hope you're happy Wall Street" caused confusion.

According to ABC News, the billboard was not an advertisement, it was vandalism. The mannequins were promptly taken down and the billboards were repainted.

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