"When you're a parent and your baby’s choking, you don't think about nothing but saving your baby's life,” mom Tamiaca Pruitte said

By KC Baker
March 22, 2018 06:32 PM

Multiple news outlets report that two Ohio police officers worked to save a choking baby in the middle of a busy street earlier this week — all as their body cameras recorded the harrowing incident.

On Tuesday morning, Tamica Pruitte was driving in rush-hour traffic in Shaker Heights when she noticed her baby daughter, Tyra, in distress in her car seat in the back seat, according to local TV station WOIO.

“She was choking on her milk out of her nose,” Pruitte told the outlet.

She hit the brakes, turned on her hazard lights and got out of her vehicle in busy traffic to try to help her baby, who had stopped breathing, Pruitte recalled.

“When you’re a parent and your baby’s choking, you don’t think about nothing but saving your baby’s life,” she told local station WEWS.

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According to local reports, Shaker Heights police officers Ryan Sidders and Alex Oklander just happened to be driving by when they saw Pruitte’s vehicle with its flashing lights stopped in the road.

“We were thinking maybe the car broke down and needed a tow truck in route or something like that,” Sidders told WOIO. “Then we see the mother exit the car and run to the other side really, really quickly.”

Pruitte, said Oklander, “seemed kind of frantic and didn’t really know what to do.” So they came to her aid.


“The baby had what seemed to be milk coming out of her mouth and nose,” Oklander told TV station WJW. “That’s when we administered the back thrusts.”

In the bodycam video of the encounter, one of the two officers is heard telling the infant, “Come here, sweetie,” according to the Washington Post.

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After a few tense moments, the baby was breathing, to her mother’s great relief.

Pruitte thanked the officers for saving her baby — and hers.

“It could’ve been my life and her life, too, today, because I had to stop in the middle of traffic,” she told WOIO.

The officers were similarly relieved.

Sidders told the station: “Thank God, as soon as we heard that cough, we were both kind of the like, ‘Phew!’ “