Florida Cop Rescues Woman From Burning SUV


Dashboard camera video shows a Boca Raton police officer rescue a woman from a burning sport utility vehicle moments after a crash on Interstate 95.

The crash occurred shortly before 8 p.m. Wednesday in the northbound lanes of I-95 near the Spanish River Boulevard overpass.

According to the Florida Highway Patrol, the driver of the SUV lost control and crashed into a sign pole. Moments later, the SUV caught fire.

“The whole front of the truck was engulfed in flames and there was so much smoke. The windows were up, you couldn't see her at all,” witness David Riggsby said.

Boca Raton police said Officer Jimmy Jalil was among the first to arrive at the scene. When he arrived, the hood of the SUV was fully engulfed in flames and a woman was trapped in the front passenger seat.

“I got the driver's left rear door open. I got in the back seat, the flames were maybe 3 inches from her face,” Jalil said.

The video showed Jalil approach the burning SUV with a fire extinguisher and then give it to a retired firefighter who had stopped to help. The ex-firefighter first used the extinguisher to douse the flames, but after several failed attempts to break the window, Jalil can be seen ordering everyone away from the SUV. He then fired two shots into the back passenger window, used his baton to clear the broken glass and pulled the woman from the SUV.

The driver, identified as David Mattheu, and another passenger were ejected from the SUV. Mattheu was pronounced dead at the scene.

Both passengers were taken to Delray Medical Center in serious condition.

On Camera: Officer Saves Woman From Burning Vehicle

Copyright 2010 by WPBF.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.