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First responders catch N.J. toddler tossed from window of burning building

Firefighters and police officers also helped the South Brunswick child’s father, who jumped to safety


Image/South Brunswick Police Department

Kyle Lawson
Staten Island Advance, N.Y.

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — A 3-year-old boy dropped from the window of a burning apartment building Monday morning was caught by first responders standing below, in a dramatic scene captured by a police officer’s body-worn camera.

The father and son became trapped inside their second-story apartment at the South Ridge Woods complex in South Brunswick at about 8:20 a.m., as police officers, firefighters and a construction worker nearby rushed to the scene, authorities told ABC7 reported.

Rescue captured on officers’ body-worn camera. Dad throws child out 2nd floor window to officers and firefighters, then jumps to escape flames consuming apartment building.

“It’s a lot, because you’re trying to put yourself in his shoes to think, hey, you’re dropping your kid down,” South Brunswick Police Department Sergeant William Merkler told the news outlet. “I can’t even imagine what was going through his mind.”

The father then lowered himself headfirst into the group, reportedly walking away dazed but with minor injuries.

Emergency crews thought the building was cleared when the man was seen sticking his head out the window.

“The fact that he was sleeping, and we pounded on those doors,” Fire Chief Chris Perez told ABC7.. “I mean, we were making a lot of noise.”

All of the residents inside the 24-unit building were able to flee the three-alarm fire, the Post reported.


(c)2022 Staten Island Advance, N.Y.