Officers Christopher Charles and Luis Rodriguez of the Springfield Police Department in Massachusetts graduated from the city’s police academy just last year, but they already have made a big difference in their community.
On Monday, they saved the life of a baby girl who was choking.
The two officers were posted at an intersection where construction was going on. At about 2 p.m., a car pulled over, a woman got out, and she started screaming that her baby wasn’t breathing.
It was a small miracle that the emergency took place when and where it did and that the mother was able to spot the officers, as Charles (who is a parent himself) and Rodriguez responded immediately and started giving the baby life-saving measures.
According to the Springfield Police Department, the 3-month-old was “pale, choking and gasping for air” when the two officers reached the car.
“Officer Rodriguez immediately requested an ambulance while Officer Charles removed the baby from her car seat,” the police department’s Facebook post said. “The footage begins in the moments Officer Charles places the baby face down on his forearm and pats her on the back to help clear her airway. Shortly after, the baby girl responds by crying.
“AMR paramedics arrived soon after and transported the baby to an area hospital for further evaluation. The baby was released from the hospital later on Monday.”
Bodycam footage shared with the public shows the tense moments when the baby started breathing, her mother sobbing in the background.
“I just relied on my training, you know; someone was in distress and we had been trained to react,” Charles said during a press conference, according to Boston.com.
“We do a lot of training in the academy, [and] I just came from an in-service [training] as well, and I also have kids.”
Police Superintendent Cheryl Clapprood recognized the officers’ work and skills on the job.
“I am so proud of these officers who immediately took action, kept their composure in a stressful situation and worked together to help this baby,” Clapprood said. “Officers start every shift not knowing what they may face that day or how they may be able to make an impact, and I am thankful that they were in the right place at the right time to use their training to save a life.”
The two heroes also were acknowledged by Mayor Domenic Sarno.
“First of all, I am very happy that mom and baby are doing well and healthy,” Sarno said. “Such a beautiful child and loving mother whose quick thinking to pull over after seeing the officers working a road detail, I am so relieved that our brave and dedicated officers were able to offer assistance and utilize their training to save the life of this precious child.
“Simply tremendous life-saving work by Officers Christopher Charles and Luis Rodriguez — they were so calm, cool and collected. Sometimes people forget that our police officers are not only brave, compassionate, but also, sentinels of peace making for a better and healthier community.”
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