Life Saving Incident

December 12, 2021
Lake County
St. John

Officer Darrell Shaffer was hailed for his swift actions in saving two young girls from a car that ended up submerged in a retention pond. The rescue happened after the girls' mother, who was driving, led police on a high-speed chase from St. John, Indiana to Highland, Ind. "When you have kids of your own, and you see them struggling, it's not their fault," Shaffer said. "They did nothing wrong. They were in a bad situation they should have never been put in." Shaffer, a 24-year police veteran and father of three, rescued a 3-year-old girl and an 8-month old girl from the back seat. The car was in chest-deep water. Dashcam footage from Shaffer's squad car captured the pursuit eastbound on 80/94. The suspect car was seen splashing into the retention pond off the Kennedy Avenue exit ramp. Moments later, Officer Shaffer was seen running into the water. "I saw the 3-year-old floating in the back and I didn't know how much time I had to get her out," Shaffer said. He got the 3-year-old out through the passenger's side window, then learned about the baby, but couldn't see her. "I still couldn't see the baby," Shaffer said. "I reached in the water and I felt the leg and then I pulled her upside down out of the water. She was submerged for a minute and a half. I didn't know how much time I had til the car started to sink." Police say the girls' mom had fled police during an earlier traffic stop in which a male occupant of the car ran off, who'd been wanted on an arrest warrant. The mother and the man who fled were both arrested. Police say the man also ended up in a retention pond after trying to escape on foot. "I can't say enough about how proud we are of Officer Shaffer," said Saint John Police Chief Steven Flores.

The history of law enforcement in the United States is a long and wonderful history of bravery. This website is dedicated to documenting the heroic deeds of law enforcement officers throughout the United States who have either given or risked their lives to save others. There are many stories of bravery and heroism for many who are considered first responders. However, it is those in law enforcement who are most likely to be the first to arrive upon a location requiring life saving acts engaging dangerous hostage takers, running into burning buildings/vehicles, providing first aid to seriously injured victims, saving near drowning victims and much more are what the women and men of law enforcement do routinely and at many times, great peril to their own safety.
It is our mission to document the history of lives saved by those dedicated women and men in law enforcement. To share with others the dramatic deeds of those individuals who are the first, first responders. It is so important for our citizens to understand that law "enforcement" is not always about enforcing the law but rather being there when our citizens need us.
It is to this end we are dedicated to promoting documentation regarding the history of law enforcement and the lives they have saved.