Officers Save the Day After Pittsburgh Manhole Cover Swallows Engagement Ring

The throwback manhole covers marking the Carson Street sidewalk on Pittsburgh’s Southside have a unique characteristic that led to a “one in a million shot,” according to police officers who responded to a mini-emergency last Thursday at about midnight.

You see, the well-worn covers are completely solid, except for six silver-dollar sized ventilation holes spaced evenly around the circular mass of metal.

Sgt. Andrew Robinson and Officer Kyle Briggs were on a routine patrol when they saw a woman in distress. The newly engaged woman had just lost her diamond ring — and you know where it ended up.

“It just slipped off her finger and went directly into the hole of the sewer grate,” Robinson told WPXI Channel 11 News. “I mean it was a one-in-a-million shot.”

The officers snapped into action and literally MacGyvered a solution. In a nod to TV genius Angus MacGyver disarming a nuclear bomb with a paper clip, these patrolmen employed a pole, tape and a paperclip to rescue the engagement ring at a depth of 15 feet.

“We found a pole behind Marios [South Side Saloon],” Briggs told Channel 11 News. “We found a paperclip in one of our cars and we just taped the paperclip to the end of the pole and fished it out.”

On its website, Channel 11 News shared a video of the recovery taken by one of the officers using his cell phone.

When a Channel 11 News reporter arrived on the scene, the MacGyvered pole, still altered with tape and a paperclip, had been returned to the area behind Mario’s, near the dumpster.

Robinson and Briggs reported that the young woman washed the ring off with water, placed it back onto her finger, hugged her fiancé and promised the officers that they were invited to her wedding.

Problem is, the officers never got her name.

Credits: Screen captures via


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