Body cam shows Florida deputies pull non-verbal autistic boy from pond
It was a harrowing experience for a young child and two Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office (HCSO) deputies when a rescue became dire.
Just before 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday, the sheriff's office said deputies responded to Valleyridge Court, where a concerned caller said they saw a young child running across the street and into a nearby pond.
Body camera footage from two deputies shows the harrowing moments when they pulled a four-year-old boy with autism from a pond.
The sheriff's office said the two deputies arrived at the scene and immediately began searching the water. After thoroughly looking through the thick shrubs at the edge of the pond, they located the boy, who was being kept afloat by cattails, and pulled him to safety.
Deputies discovered that the boy was also nonverbal after rescuing him.
"I just kept sinking and sinking, and I'm like, 'I don't know how deep this is gonna get,'" one deputy said following the rescue.
"I could barely hold him, my feet were sinking so deep. It would've been a bad day," the other deputy responded.
The boy did not sustain any life-threatening injuries and was reunited with his family, the sheriff's office said.
“I shudder to think of the outcome if not for the tenacity and efforts of these deputies," said Sheriff Chad Chronister. "We will now work with the Department of Children and Families (DCF) to determine if negligence played a role in this young boy's disappearance.”
The sheriff's office says the investigation as to how the child wandered off is still ongoing.