The Inmates Could've Escaped. Instead They Called 911
Georgia work crew applauded for assisting unconscious officer
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 20, 2017 11:30 AM CDT
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They were rewarded with pizza. (Stock image.)   (Getty Images/ftwitty)

(Newser) – As a Georgia correctional officer lay unconscious on the ground, six inmates surrounded him. Then one reached toward the officer's belt and grabbed, not his gun, but his cellphone. As the inmate called 911, the others removed the officer's bulletproof vest so they could perform CPR. "It wasn't about who is in jail and who wasn't," one of the inmates tells WXIA. "It was about a man going down and we had to help him." Polk County authorities say the officer was supervising a work detail at a cemetery last Monday, in 76-degree heat with 100% humidity, when he told the inmates he wasn't feeling well and soon after collapsed.

"My guys were thinking the worst on their way over there," Polk County Sheriff Johnny Moats tells WSB Radio. "When they got there, all the inmates were with the officer. All were accounted for. They took care of him." An inmate says the officer at first appeared as though he wasn't breathing, though he regained consciousness about a minute later, with breaths coming "real heavy and real fast." The officer then received medical attention and is now doing fine, per WXIA. To thank the inmates, who "really stepped up in a time of crisis," the sheriff's office provided them with a free pizza lunch. The officer's family provided dessert. (Something like this happened before.)

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