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August 19, 2019

Father of boy saved by French ‘Spider-Man’ was playing Pokémon Go

May 29, 2018
French “Spider-Man” Mamoudou Gassema met with President Emmanuel Macron. (THIBAULT CAMUS/AFP/Getty Images)

A little boy was lucky his plight caught the attention of a heroic passerby while his father was trying to “catch ’em all.”

Prosecutors said that the man whose son was saved by “French Spider-Man” went shopping but lingered to play the popular mobile game Pokémon Go on his way back as the boy dangled from their apartment in northern Paris.

His mother was also away, though she was visiting relatives on Réunion Island, a department of France in the Indian Ocean, prosecutor Francois Molins told BFMTV, adding that the father recognized that there could have been “tragic consequences.”

The boy lives a floor above and had already fallen once before a spectacular rescue, the network reported

Further tagic consequences were avoided when Mamoudou Gassema, a 22-year-old undocumented worker from Mali, saw the situation and scaled four stories on the outside of the building to rescue the child.

Gassema’s heroics were captured by a passerby and shared on social media, leading to widespread praise including the moniker “Spider-Man of the 18th Arrondissement” from Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo.

He also met with French President Emmanuel Macron, who said that his naturalization process would be fast-tracked and he could soon join the firefighting service.

The boy’s mother, who like him and the father has not been identified, told Antenne Réunion that she was grateful to the stranger and hoped to meet him.

She added that she had video-chatted with her husband and son just a half hour before the scare, which she saw after she was called by the police.

“I don’t justify the act of my husband. It could have happened to other people, like it has already happened to other people. My son was lucky,” she said.

The father was taken into custody after the rescue, though his wife, who took a plane back to Paris Monday night, said he had been released.

He faces a case for parental neglect which is set to start in September.

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