LOS ANGELES – Sheriff Jim McDonnell on Thursday honored 31 members of the Sheriff’s Department for their heroic actions.
Among those presented with Lifesaving medals were two deputies assigned to the Lancaster Station — Elijah J. Goffigan and Erik M. Riddle — and three deputies assigned to the Palmdale Station — Robert C. Hawkins, Jason A. Viger and David A. Nisenoff.
Lancaster Station deputies Elijah J. Goffigan and Erik M. Riddle were recognized for saving the life of a female driver after a medical emergency last year. According to the Sheriff’s Information Bureau:
On July 24, 2015, deputies Goffigan and Riddle, assigned to Lancaster Station, responded to a roadway intersection regarding a woman found lying on the ground. Upon their arrival, they observed a female suspended from the open doorway of a vehicle parked along the curb line. Witnesses informed the deputies they had found the woman hanging from the passenger door with her head wedged between the open window and the inside door frame. It appeared she had some type of medical emergency and then collapsed as she tried to exit the vehicle. The position she landed cut off her air supply causing her to suffocate. Deputies Goffigan and Riddle recognized the female had no pulse, was not breathing and her pupils were dilated. They immediately began CPR and were able to revive the woman’s heartbeat and respiration. Los Angeles County Fire paramedics arrived and took over medical care and transported the female to the hospital in critical condition.
Hospital medical staff advised the female had suffered a series of strokes, which likely caused her to fall into the precarious position the deputies found her in. The situation was exacerbated by her inability to breathe or free herself from the car.
Los Angeles County Fire captain in charge that day called Lancaster Station to commend the deputies for their actions and relayed the female’s life was saved as a direct result of their efforts.
Palmdale Station deputies Robert C. Hawkins and Jason A. Viger were recognized for their emergency medical treatment, which helped save the life of an assault victim last year. According to the Sheriff’s Information Bureau:
In the early hours of October 31, 2015, deputies Hawkins and Viger, assigned to Palmdale Station, responded to an assault with a deadly weapon call. Upon their arrival, they found the victim on the ground bleeding profusely from a large laceration on his arm. They immediately applied a tourniquet just above his elbow. Once the bleeding slowed considerably, the deputies packed the wound with gauze and wrapped it with a compression bandage. Los Angeles County Fire arrived shortly after, providing additional emergent aid to the victim and transporting him to the hospital.
The Chief of Surgery and Trauma Director of Antelope Valley Hospital wrote a letter commending deputies Hawkins and Viger, stating their emergency medical treatment saved the life of the victim.
Deputy David A. Nisenoff of the Palmdale Station was honored for saving the life of a woman who went into full cardiac arrest in 2012. According to the Sheriff’s Information Bureau:
On the evening of Christmas Eve 2012, Deputy David Nisenoff, assigned to Palmdale Station, responded to a person not breathing call. It was learned that the husband had left his wife, who was sick with pneumonia, for a short time to pick up some necessary items from the store. When he returned, he found his wife unresponsive and his nine-year-old son had called 911. The husband had already begun CPR and was joined by Deputy Nisenoff upon his arrival. Deputy Nisenoff began chest compressions while the husband administered rescue breathing to his wife. Los Angeles County Fire paramedics arrived and transported the victim for medical care.
Upon the victim’s entry into the hospital, the attending physician estimated a five percent chance of survival, while neurologist warned that if she did survive, she may remain in a vegetative state. After an extended stay in the hospital, the victim made a full physical and mental recovery with the exception of the loss of her fingertips due to oxygen deprivation.
The Los Angeles County Fire captain that day advised the victim had been in full cardiac arrest and the administration of CPR by Deputy Nisenoff and the husband likely saved the victim’s life.
The victim’s husband called Palmdale Station to thank and commend Deputy Nisenoff for helping save his wife’s life, stating, “Deputy Nisenoff helped keep me stable. He was really the key factor in helping save her life and her mental capacity.”
To read the lifesaving stories of the other honorees from Sheriff’s substations across Los Angeles County, click here.
In a special segment of the ceremony, Sheriff McDonnell awarded the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Star Scroll to personnel from the Los Angeles County Fire Department and the United States Coast Guard for their collaborative efforts with the LASD in saving the life of a scuba diver.