Many times they are first on the scene and the first with a chance to help.
But a police officer’s job isn’t just making arrests, sometimes its about saving lives.
Its something one SCMPD officer learned first hand this weekend.
“You hear me? cmon sweetie.”
Those are the words from an SCMPD Sgt on body camera video of an overdose in progress, and an officer trying to save a life.
It happened September 29 at a hotel on Stephenson ave.
Sgt Alycia McLemore was one of the officers who beat EMS to the scene and began trying to help the unresponsive pregnant woman.
“Its scary. I think is the best word,” said McLemore.
That fear according to Sgt Alycia McLemore was seeing someone dying in front of her own eyes.
“She would not react to pain stimulus,” said Sgt McLemore. “I did some sternum rubs, she was not even functioning.”
That’s when her training kicked in and she thought of the drug all SCMPD officers now carry.
“You need Narcan? yep, cmon.”
The drug, specifically designed to aid people overdosing on drugs, goes right up the patient’s nose and into her system. Bringing help, and bringing her a second chance.
“Yeah there you go c’mon. gimme some breathing,” McLemore czan be heard saying on the video.
“She took a couple of deep breaths, almost like a snore sound,” remembered Sgt Alycia McLemore.
“And I did see her eyelid flutter a bit which was more response than i had gotten the entire time i had been there.”
A reaction which eased the Sgt’s mind, and gave the woman new life.
“I think we’ve used it 15 times over the past year, and thats a lot,” said McLemore. “Thats a lot, I mean we are not EMS we don’t expect to confront that.”
The patient survived and was able to get medical attention.
McLemore hopes her first time using Narcan will be her last and hopes this will be that woman’s last time using, and abusing.
“I just really hope that she gets help. I really do,” said McLemore. “She’s got a child that is going to depend on her to make the right decisions and i just hope this is a wake up call and she will go down the right path and get some help.”
Sgt McLemore says this is not a new problem. She says she’s dealt with probably 20 overdoses in her 14 year career. But she hopes with this new weapon in her belt, the number of deaths she’ll have to deal with, will be zero.