COLUMBIA CITY â€” A Churubusco fireman and a pair of Columbia City Police officers saved two lives over the weekend. Ben Rinker, of Churubuscoâ€™s Fire Department, pulled a man from a burning house Friday night.
Officers Shad Hunter and Doug Eber saved a woman from an attempted suicide attempt at Park Terrace Sunday.
After a woman barricaded herself in an apartment and attempted to hang herself, Hunter and Eber entered the residence and saved her life.
â€śShe was already passed out,â€ť Eber said. â€śHad we not found her, she wouldâ€™ve died.â€ť
Eber and fellow officer Hunter were dispatched to the residence after a disturbance complaint. The woman was allegedly in the hallway kicking a door.
â€śWhen Officer Hunter arrived, the medics were walking out and said she went in an apartment and locked the door,â€ť Eber said. â€śWe were knocking on the door and she wouldnâ€™t answer it.â€ť
Eber said because she was locked inside and they didnâ€™t have exigent circumstances (emergency conditions) they had no choice but to leave.
â€śI almost got to my car and Shad looked back and thought he saw her through the window of the apartment,â€ť Eber said. â€śHe went in the building to check the door. When he was walking back out. He looked in the window and saw a chair barricaded against the door.â€ť
Eber said Hunter then saw the woman hanging from a wall fixture.
â€śWe kicked the door in, I held her up and Shad took the rope off her neck.â€ť
The woman had an initial extremely high blood alcohol content of .31 after a breathalyzer test.
â€śHad Shad not made a double-check back there, she wouldâ€™ve succeeded,â€ť Eber said. â€śShad was sharp enough to take another look.â€ť
The womanâ€™s identity is being withheld to protect her medical privacy.
Smith Township Fireman Rinker saved a 63-year-old man, Stephan Harris, from his burning home. Area media reports that Rinker and his family were driving south on U.S. 33 when they saw a burning home.
Rinker saw a man inside the engulfed home, and carried him out before he was consumed by fire.
Rinker, a captain at STFD, has been on the department for 12 years.