Police in Alliance, Ohio said Monday that several of their officers saved a woman in a sinking vehicle that had crashed into a local river.
“Alliance Police Officers Tussey, Tallman, Amabeli and McCord extracted a trapped motorist from her sinking minivan after she crashed into the river last night,” cops said in a statement to Facebook.
Police released body cam footage on Monday from the point of view of one of their officers. As seen on the video, the officer approached a river, his path lit by his flashlight. A minivan could be seen in the water, having sunken in front first.
“We’re coming,” the officer called out. A colleague gave him a tomahawk, and he turned toward an officer who had stepped almost neck-deep in to the water. (Alliance, Ohio reached a reported low of 39 degrees Fahrenheit on Sunday.)
“I can’t breathe,” said the other officer in the water. The first officer grabbed his hand, and said “I’ve got you.” He gave the tomahawk to the officer in the water, and that second officer used it to smash out one of the rear windows of the minivan.
The lone occupant of the vehicle made her way out it with the help of the cop who was in the water. That officer was Christian Tussey.
“So I’m trying to go down as fast as I could, and she goes, ‘Just jump in,'” he told Law&Crime Daily, smiling. “That didn’t happen.” He did enter the water, but it was deeper than he originally thought, expecting it to be just knee-to-thigh deep.
“You know, at the time, it is just another call,” said Officer Shane Tallman. “That’s how we train for these things.”
The minivan sank underwater after the incident. The police department said that the woman sustained minor injuries, and was allowed to go home. They suggested that she had crashed after falling asleep.
[Screengrab via City of Alliance Police Department]
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