PALMDALE – A 15-month-old boy is alive today thanks to the efforts of two Palmdale Station deputies, who saved the infant from a near-drowning accident Saturday morning.
The incident happened at a family home on 85th Street East in Littlerock. Around 10:18 a.m., a 9-1-1 call from the home came in to the Palmdale Sheriff’s Station reporting that a 15-month-old baby was not breathing.
Coincidentally, Palmdale Station Deputies Shaffer and Towne were close by.
“We happened to be across the street and two houses over from where the call went out,” said Deputy Todd Shaffer.
Shaffer said when he arrived to the home, the situation was chaotic.
“There were several kids at the house, all brothers and sisters, and they were all in a panic, screaming and crying, and the 17-year-old sister who was with the patient at the time was attempting to start some CPR on him,” Shaffer said.
Shaffer said he quickly assessed the infant, and noticed he was not breathing.
“We began rescue breathing on the child,” Shaffer said. “We couldn’t get a pulse, so I personally started the actual [chest] compressions for the CPR on the child.”
Shaffer said they contacted emergency services and continued CPR until the Los Angeles County Fire Department paramedics arrived. The paramedics continued the CPR while transporting the baby to the hospital in an ambulance. Deputies used their patrol cars with lights and sirens to block traffic in the intersections so they could expedite the arrival time of the ambulance to the hospital.
When the baby arrived at the hospital, medical professionals found that he had a pulse. Shortly thereafter, the boy began labored breathing on his own.
“To hear that when they got to the hospital, the little guy’s got a heartbeat, it’s pretty rewarding,” Shaffer said.
The baby was airlifted to another hospital for specialized treatment where he remains in critical condition.
Shaffer said an investigation revealed the infant’s 9-year-old sister, who has a developmental disability, had apparently taken the baby into the family pool.
The infant’s 17-year-old sister found the baby’s lifeless body face down on the grass near the pool, and another adult sibling called 9-1-1.
Shaffer said the incident was turned over to the Department’s Special Victims Bureau.
“Their statement so far, with the evidence we’ve come up with, is it is an accident,” Shaffer said. “It’s a tragic accident.”