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Off-duty Cop Rescues Woman from Drowning

April 30, 2002

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Off-duty Cop Rescues Woman from Drowning

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by Linda Jump, Florida Today

PALM BAY, FLA. - Palm Bay police Officer Steven Huss, who shot a man to death while responding to a domestic dispute in late March, rescued a drowning woman late Monday while off duty.

Huss, a 17-year veteran of the police force, is credited with resuscitating the 33-year-old at Country Gardens. The victim was not identified because the incident was reported as a 911 call, which police said are confidential.

A neighbor to the drowning woman, Abdul Hassib, had summoned Huss, who was in the vicinity. Huss saw the woman submerged in the deep end of the northern pool at the complex, and pulled her to the side with the lifeguard recovery pole. He and Hassib pulled the woman from the water, then Huss resuscitated her about 8 p.m.

Treated at Palm Bay Community Hospital and released, the woman said she remembers getting out of the pool on her own. She told police, however, that she has a history of seizures, and may have suffered one Monday night, causing her to fall back in, Lt. Doug Dechenne said.

Huss declined to comment about the rescue.

On March 28, Huss and three other officers were called to a dispute and Huss shot and killed Robert Frazier, 26, who may have been waving a sword. Witnesses to the shooting described Huss collapsing to his knees and grasping his head in his hands immediately after firing the shots.

Huss was placed on administrative leave, following police protocol, and was returned to active duty by Police Chief Paul Rumbley earlier this month.

Officer James Carroll, the primary on-duty officer to respond to the near-drowning said, "Officer Huss definitely saved her life."

On April 8, Carroll saved an 88-year-old woman when her car became submerged in a canal upside down. Carroll used his baton to break the Pontiac's window and pull Margaret Ruff to safety.

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