Lifesaving Awards were presented this week

The Lifesaving Award is presented to employees or Reserve members of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department whose actions actions result in the saving or preservation of a human life that otherwise would have expired without the employee's direct involvement.


San Dimas Sheriff's Station

On May 19, 2010, Deputy Matthew Bounds, assigned to San Dimas Station, responded to a rescue call involving a 3-year-old boy who had fallen into a hotel pool. Paramedics at the scene advised Deputy Bounds that the boy needed immediate transport to the hospital due to his grave condition. Deputy Bounds accepted this monumentally stressful task.

As one paramedic performed CPR on the boy in the passenger seat, the paramedic in the rear seat provided necessary equipment to his partner. Deputy Bounds' careful handling of his patrol car during this time enabled the medics to maintain complete control of their lifesaving efforts.

Hospital staff later called on behalf of the treating physician to commend Deputy Bounds for his amazingly calm and composed manner throughout this incident, and assistance in saving the boy's life by getting him to the hospital in record time.

For his lifesaving actions, Deputy Bounds is presented the Lifesaving Award.



Compton Sheriff's Station

On July 23, 2010, Deputies Salvador Esquivel and Edward Robles, assigned to Compton Station, responded to a call involving a man who had fallen in his shower and was not breathing.

Deputies lifted the man out of the shower and onto the floor, then checked for a pulse. Realizing he did not have one, Deputies Esquivel and Robles took turns conducting chest compressions for over four minutes, until the arrival of paramedics.

Paramedics later determined the man had been in cardiac arrest and without the deputies' quick response and immediate efforts, the man would not have survived.

For their lifesaving actions, Deputies Esquivel and Robles are presented the Lifesaving Award.


Mira Loma Detention Facility

On August 16, 2010, Custody Assistant Scott Leaf, assigned to the Mira Loma Detention Center, responded to a call regarding a detainee who had collapsed.

Leaf, a trained Emergency Medical Technician, immediately took control of the situation and deployed a bag valve mask. At times the detainee's respiration became dangerously shallow; however, Leaf's skill and use of the valve mask kept the detainee breathing.

Custody Assistant Leaf continued to monitor the detainee's breathing, pulse and blood pressure until paramedics arrived. The Fire Captain later commented that it was Leaf's decisive action that kept the detainee alive during this incident.

For his lifesaving actions, Custody Assistant Leaf is presented the Lifesaving Award.



Crescenta Valley Sheriff's Station

On August 17, 2010, Law Enforcement Technician Richard Engersbach and Evidence and Property Custodian II Marc Harvey were driving from Crescenta Valley Station when they discovered a residence fully engulfed in flames.

Engersbach and Harvey immediately requested emergency assistance, then approached the rear door of the residence to check for anyone inside the location. After pounding on the door several times, a female finally answered. She and her daughter had been asleep in a back bedroom.

Engersbach and Harvey told the woman her house was on fire and that everyone should immediately evacuate. However, she did not believe them because they were not wearing deputy uniforms. They pleaded with the woman and her daughter to trust them, and when they finally convinced them to evacuate, they led the women to safety prior to the arrival of Fire Department personnel. Neither woman had smelled any smoke or heard anything unusual prior to their arrival and could possibly have perished in the fire.

For their lifesaving actions, Law Enforcement Technician Engersbach and Property and Evidence Custodian II Harvey are presented the Lifesaving Award.



Temple Sheriff's Station

On August 19, 2010, Deputies David Lopez and Stevan Suarez, assigned to Temple Station, were driving in the city of El Monte when they observed an elderly female standing on a bridge over a concrete riverbed. Suspecting the woman may be trying to commit suicide, they quickly returned to render aid and requested assistance.

As the woman assumed a "swan dive" position, Deputies Lopez and Suarez attempted to calm her down. Using their best verbal skills, the deputies convinced the woman to place one of her legs back over a safety railing. With little time to think, they each grabbed one of her arms and pulled the despondent woman back to safety.

Officers from the El Monte Police Department arrived and took the woman into protective custody.

For their lifesaving actions, Deputies Lopez and Suarez are presented the Lifesaving Award.


Sheriff's Facilities Services Bureau

On January 20, 2011, Tile Setter William Matteo, assigned to Facilities Services Bureau, was in the Officers' Dining Room at Men's Central Jail having lunch when he noticed an individual suddenly stand and place both of his hands on his throat. Realizing the man was choking, Matteo immediately began performing the Heimlich maneuver. After two forceful compressions, the object lodged in the man's throat was dislodged and he began to breathe normally again.

For his lifesaving actions, Tile Setter Matteo is presented the Lifesaving Award.


Palmdale Sheriff's Station

On December 13, 2010, Deputy Diane Valadez, assigned to Palmdale Station, responded to a 911 call involving an unconscious man. Upon her arrival, Deputy Valadez ran into the residence and found a man who was unresponsive. She quickly assessed the situation and began cardiopulmonary resuscitation. She continued CPR for over 5 minutes, until the arrival of paramedics. Deputy Valadez' decisive actions and efficient performance not only saved the man's life, but prevented potentially serious coronary or brain damage.

For her lifesaving actions, Deputy Valadez is presented the Lifesaving Award.


Century Regional Detention Facility

On January 8, 2011, Deputy Quoia Griffin, assigned to the Century Regional Detention Facility, was alerted to an inmate who appeared to be in great distress and was having difficulty breathing. Recognizing the inmate was choking, Deputy Griffin immediately began to perform the Heimlich maneuver until the inmate was able to breathe normally. The inmate later remarked that without Deputy Griffin's intervention, she surely would not have survived.

For her lifesaving actions, Deputy Griffin is presented the Lifesaving Award.



Compton Sheriff's Station

On December 23, 2010, Deputies Michael Allen and Barry Poltorak, while assigned to Compton Station, responded to a call of an infant not breathing. Upon arriving at the residence, the deputies found the infant on the floor surrounded by distressed family members.

Without hesitation, Deputies Allen and Poltorak worked as a team to conduct an airway assessment and deliver back strikes, which caused the infant to breathe and his skin color to return to normal. The child was transported to a hospital and eventually made a full recovery.

For their lifesaving actions, Deputies Allen and Poltorak are presented the Lifesaving Award.


Sheriff's Parks Bureau

On January 9, 2011, Deputy Richard Nichol, assigned to the Parks Bureau, was alerted to a small boat sinking in Pyramid Lake. Three individuals, who were wearing heavy clothing and no life jackets, were struggling to stay afloat in 47-degree water.

Deputy Nichol realized the victims would likely succumb to hypothermia and possibly drown within minutes. He raced across the lake in his patrol boat and found one of the victims semiconscious and the other two desperately yelling for help. Deputy Nichol threw the men a rope in an attempt to pull them into his boat; however, due to their weakened physical condition and heavy clothing, they could not lift themselves up.

Deputy Nichol climbed over the stern of the boat and out onto the motor mount bracket, and one by one pulled all three victims to safety.

All three men were transported to a hospital, where they made a full recovery.

For his lifesaving actions, Deputy Nichol is presented the Lifesaving Award.


Sheriff's Court Services West Bureau

On February 15, 2011, Deputy Jeffrey Contreras, assigned to Court Services West Bureau, was working a weapons screening station when he heard a cry for help regarding a man on the ground.

After discovering the man was not breathing and void of a pulse, Deputy Contreras began to perform CPR. After approximately 20 chest compressions, the man began to breathe on his own. The man was transported to a hospital, where the assistant director shared that had it not been for Deputy Contreras' immediate actions, the man would not have lived.

For his lifesaving actions, Deputy Contreras is presented the Lifesaving Award.



Crescenta Valley Sheriff's Station

On March 9, 2011, Deputies Eddie Tsuang and Will Agtual, assigned to Crescenta Valley Station, responded to a call regarding an elderly woman in full cardiac arrest. After discovering the woman was unresponsive, Deputies Tsuang and Agtual immediately began to perform CPR. They continued CPR until paramedics took over and transported the woman to a local hospital.

Because of their efforts, the woman lived an additional 24 hours, which allowed enough time for her family to arrive at the hospital to be by her side.

For their lifesaving actions, Deputies Tsuang and Agtual are presented the Lifesaving Award.

Our Mission:

Lead the fight to prevent crime and injustice. Enforce the law fairly and defend the rights of all.

Partner with the people we serve to secure and promote safety in our communities.

Our Core Values:

As a leader in the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, I commit myself to honorably perform my duties with respect for the dignity of all people, integrity to do right and fight wrongs, wisdom to apply common sense and fairness in all I do and courage to stand against racism, sexism, anti-Semitism, homophobia and bigotry in all its forms.

Our Creed:

My goals are simple, I will always be painfully honest, work as hard as I can, learn as much as I can and hopefully make a difference in people's lives.

(Deputy David W. March EOW April 29, 2002)

Leroy D. Baca, Sheriff

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