The 15-year-old White Plains boy who Saturday night in Peekskill’s Veterans Memorial Pool remains in critical condition today, police said.
The boy and three Peekskill friends ages 15 and 16, jumped an eight-foot fence surrounding the Olympic size pool located in around 10:25 p.m. Saturday night and went for the swim. Police will not identify any of the teens involved in the incident.
When the three Peekskill boys noticed their friend was at the bottom of the pool they tried to get him out but were unable to do so, Peekskill Police Lieutenant Eric Johansen said. Johansen said he was not sure whether the boy knew how to swim or not.
“Drowning is a quick process,” Johansen said. “Signs of drowning are not overt as people think. All it takes is a gulp of water many times with drowning victims.”
After they were unable to rescue their friend, the boys summoned help from a Peekskill resident walking his dog in the park who happened to be a retired New York City firefighter, Johansen said.
“He sprung into action, jumped the fence, went into the pool and got the kid out,” Johansen said. “He is a hero.” (The retired NYCFD was not available for comment at the time of this posting.)
One of the other boys called 911 and Peekskill police and ambulance responded within less than one minute.
The injured boy was transported to the Hudson Valley Hospital Center and then flown by helicopter to Westchester Medical Center, where he remains in critical condition.
“Unfortunately, the pool is an attractive target especially when its hot,” Johansen said of the pool. “It is heavily patrolled to deter people from going in there. The gates are locked and the fence is 8-feet high. There is no easy way in. Unfortunately, that was compromised and the tragedy that occurred is an unfortunate situation.”
Police do not expect any foul play in this incident, but have not ruled out bringing criminal charges against the boys for trespassing.