A police officer is being honored as a hero after risking her own life to save a drowning infant.
According to a Facebook post by the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office, Officer Me’Atia Sanderson jumped into a pond to save a drowning infant, despite not being able to swim herself.
Jacksonville.com reports that a resident of a nearby apartment complex called 911 after witnessing two young children “struggling” in the pond.
The one-year-old girl and two-year-old boy were reportedly playing in the pond unsupervised when they wandered too deep and began to drown. The two-year-old managed to get out of the water but onlookers watched as the one-year-old became fully submerged in the pond.
When Offer Sanderson arrived at the scene, she didn’t hesitate to run to the pond and jump in, despite the risk to her own safety. She was able to pull the baby girl out of the water and performed CPR until more officers arrived to take over.
According to News 4 Jax, the young girl was transported to the hospital and is in “very critical condition.”
Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office shared a video of the bodycam footage from the rescue on Facebook. Along with the footage, they recognized Officer Me’Atia Sanderson for her heroic actions.
They wrote: “Police Officers across this country report to work each and everyday to protect and serve their communities. They show up each day knowing they will be faced with unimaginable challenges and dangers; yet they do not know what those challenges or dangers will be or how they will present themselves.
They went on to say:
“Ofc. Sanderson was the first to arrive on scene and was alerted that the infant was still in the water. Ofc. Sanderson, who does not know how to swim herself, without a second’s hesitation, entered the pond to retrieve the child and performed CPR until she was relieved by other responding officers. Captain Christopher Scott with JFRD authored a letter to JSO on behalf of Ofc. Sanderson recognizing the impact her ‘quick and decisive decision to go into the retention pond’ made.
Her actions, while putting her own life at risk, undoubtedly saved the child’s life. As we continue our #weekofthanks, we at the #JSO are thankful that we have officers like Ofc. Sanderson, who day in and day out, take on the challenges and dangers of this job. Our community would not be what it is without them.”
You can see the video for yourself below. Viewer discretion is advised.
According to Jacksonville.com, the 23-year-old mother is being investigated by the sheriff’s department and the Department of Children and Families to learn how the kids were able to get to the pond from the upstairs apartment where they were being watched by their 14-year-old aunt.Whizzco