A woman who caused an all-night traffic jam in the South Bay for threatening to jump onto a freeway is being held for attacking a deputy after police were able to get her down from an overpass, authorities said.
The incident started at 2:28 p.m. when police received reports of a woman threatening to jump from an Interstate 680 overpass in San Jose.
Police said the woman, later identified as Sandy Quinonez, had threatened to commit suicide.
Emergency crews responded to the scene and shut down the freeway in both directions, which sparked traffic jams on area freeways and at city streets throughout the South Bay.
The traffic delays lasted more than nine hours and hit a nerve with many people.
"I've never felt so much road rage in my life," said Kadee Vigil, a San Jose resident. "I was very angry. I thought I was going to miss my classes -- my last classes before my finals and I knew I needed to do my final reviews. So it was really, really aggravating."
Many people who were in their vehicles stuck in traffic and on social media said they felt like hostages, adding they wanted police to take a more direct, faster action in getting Quinonez down from the overpass.
"Now we hear 'Oh she was not suicidal,' so it was like a misunderstanding," San Jose-resident Lauren Kwan said. "It's like we went through all that for nothing and it made me feel like the police could have been more proactive in doing something about it."
Police, however, said officers could not have handled it any differently and do not plan on changing any procedures.
"It's very difficult because of the way the bridge is structured," San Jose Police Sgt. Heather Randol said. "There is that fence there. Officers weren't able to grab somebody on the other side of it. In addition, we need to concerned about the people driving on the freeway."
The Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office said the woman is being held for attacking a jail correctional deputy. Sources tell NBC Bay Area Quinonez allegedly bit a deputy's finger, possibly severing it, while being booked into jail.
SUICIDE PREVENTION: If you know someone who needs help, you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline by calling 1-800-273-TALK (8255).