FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 10, 2017
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Public Information Bureau (609) 882-2000
Capt. Brian Polite - ext. 6514
Lt. Theodore Schafer - ext. 6515
SFC Jeff Flynn - ext. 6516
Sgt. Lawrence Peele - ext. 6531
Tpr. Alejandro Goez - ext. 6527
Tpr. Gene Hong - ext. 6532
Egg Harbor Township, N.J. - Sergeant First Class James Mitchell, of the New Jersey State Police Casino Operations Unit, rescued a couple from a burning car earlier this morning while driving to work on the Atlantic City Expressway.
At 7:44 a.m., SFC Mitchell was driving eastbound in the area of milepost 6.9 when he witnessed a Nissan Pathfinder strike a concrete barrier in the center median. He immediately slowed his troop car and activated his emergency lights to stop traffic in the left lane. When he approached, the car was fully engulfed in flames and filled with smoke as the driver was trying to remove his seatbelt. SFC Mitchell helped the driver remove the belt and exit the burning vehicle.
As the driver was being led to safety, he told the trooper that his wife was still in the car. SFC Mitchell quickly returned to the car and saw the passenger struggling to get out. During his first attempt to rescue the victim, he was unable to get her out, because her feet were caught under the dashboard. He then grabbed the woman from underneath her arms and forcibly pulled her through the window.The driver reported no injuries, and the passenger was taken to AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center Mainland Campus with non-life-threatening injuries where she was last listed as in stable condition. The cause and circumstances surrounding the crash remain under investigation.
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