Local News

Video shows Springfield police officers save choking 3-month-old baby

"I am so relieved that our brave and dedicated officers were able to offer assistance and utilize their training to save the life of this precious child."

Officers Christopher Charles and Luis Rodriguez. Springfield Police Department

A couple of Springfield police officers sprung into action and saved a choking 3-month-old baby while working a detail assignment Monday.

Officers Christopher Charles and Luis Rodriguez were working at the intersection of Bradley and Wilbraham roads at approximately 2 p.m. when a woman pulled her car over, got out, and began screaming that her baby wasn’t breathing, according to a police department release.

Officers quickly ran over to find a pale baby girl, choking and grasping for air, as seen in body camera footage of the incident that police included in the release.

Rodriguez called for ambulance, while Charles removed the baby from her car seat, placed her facedown on his forearm, and began patting her on the back to clear her airway.


Soon after, the baby can be heard crying in the video — a sign that she was breathing again.

“I want you to cry,” Charles says repeatedly, while assuring everyone that she is OK.

Paramedics arrived soon after and transported the baby to an area hospital for further evaluation, police said. She was released later that day.

“I just relied on my training, you know, someone was in distress and we had been trained to react,” said Charles at a press conference held to acknowledge their efforts. “We do a lot of training in the academy, [and] I just came from an in-service [training] as well, and I also have kids.”

The city’s mayor and police commissioner each lauded Charles and Rodriguez, who both graduated from Springfield Police Academy last year, for their efforts.

“First of all, I am very happy that mom and baby are doing well and healthy,” Mayor Domenic Sarno said in a statement. “Such a beautiful child and loving mother whose quick thinking to pull over after seeing the officers working a road detail, I am so relieved that our brave and dedicated officers were able to offer assistance and utilize their training to save the life of this precious child.


“Simply tremendous life-saving work by Officers Christopher Charles and Luis Rodriguez — they were so calm, cool and collected,” he continued. “Sometimes people forget that our police officers are not only brave, compassionate, but also, sentinels of peace making for a better and healthier community.”

“I am so proud of these officers who immediately took action, kept their composure in a stressful situation and worked together to help this baby,” Police Superintendent Cheryl Clapprood said. “Officers start every shift not knowing what they may face that day or how they may be able to make an impact, and I am thankful that they were in the right place at the right time to use their training to save a life.”

Watch the video below:


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