Indianapolis Police Officer Recounts Moments He Dove Into Pond to Rescue Teens Trapped in Car
Officer Jared Allen rescued two teens — one of whom later died of her injuries — from the submerged vehicle, while two others managed to escape and swim to shore
A police officer heroically jumped into action after he learned that two teens were trapped inside a car that had sunk to the bottom of an Indianapolis pond.
Thanks to the swift actions of Officer Jared Allen, two 16-year-olds — one with fatal injuries — were pulled from the submerged vehicle in less than 10 minutes on Saturday evening, according to NBC affiliate WTHR.
Though he managed to get one of the teens, a girl, out of the water within four minutes of diving in, it was too late, as she was later pronounced dead at a local hospital. The 16-year-old boy, meanwhile, currently remains in critical condition, the outlet reported.
A 17-year-old-driver and another 16-year-old passenger also survived the incident and were in good condition after managing to escape the vehicle and swimming the 35 feet to shore, according to WTHR.
Officials confirmed to the outlet that the incident happened around 7 p.m. on Saturday. Witnesses said they watched the vehicle — which was allegedly traveling at a high speed — leave the road, hit a tree and enter the 12-foot deep pond.
Allen, 25, was less than a half hour away from the scene when he said he received a call for help. When he arrived, the three-year police veteran, who also happens to be a former collegiate swimmer, immediately jumped into the waters.
"I had a rough idea where the car might be," he recalled to WTHR. "I got my equipment off and went in the water after them."
While in the pond, Allen said he attempted to find the vehicle — first by using his eyesight underwater, which ultimately proved to be impossible, and then later, with his feet.
"There was zero visibility, so I didn't try again after that point; I just felt my way around," Allen told the outlet. "I'm 6'6", so I use my height as an advantage."
"I put my feet down and finally was able to find the top of the car," he continued. "After that, I started doing some controlled dives down. I was able to find some openings and started reaching around to see if I could find the kids."
Allen eventually discovered the 16-year-old girl trapped in the backseat and carried her to shore, where first responders were waiting to perform CPR, according to WTHR. They transported her to Community Hospital South, where she died.
The Marion County Coroner's Office later identified her as Ella Magyer, according to WTHR.
In the meantime, Allen went back into the waters and managed to rescue the other 16-year-old from the vehicle's backseat. He was transported to St. Francis Hospital South, where he remains in critical condition.
Despite being in good condition, the two teens who escaped also were transported to hospitals as a precautionary measure, the outlet reported.
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It remains unclear if the kids were wearing seat belts. An investigation by Indianapolis officials is currently underway, according to WTHR.
Following the incident, many community members and parents have expressed their sorrow over the tragic loss of the teen, as well as their concern for others driving along Frye Road, which reportedly does not have guardrails.
A petition on Change.org has since been created by community members in an effort to add those safety measures along the road — which is considered notoriously dangerous by locals — to prevent this from happening again, according to WTHR.
"My heart dropped when I found out they were teenagers," parent Julie Hurt told the outlet. "That was one of my first lessons in teaching [my son] this road is very dangerous. Please be very careful when you're coming around this bend."