South Haven officers honored for saving man’s life

Posted at 10:38 PM, Oct 05, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-05 22:38:33-04

SOUTH HAVEN, Mich. -- Two South Haven Police officers were honored Wednesday for saving a man's life back in August.

Sgt. Kyle Griffith and Officer Shawn Olney responded to a call about a man who took dozens of prescription pain pills.

"He went into cardiac arrest," said Griffith.  "Stopped breathing, his heart stopped."

To keep him from dying, they had to get air back into his lungs.

"So I took a plastic bag and poked a hole in it and used it as a plastic mask," Griffith said.

Police say they found the victim at a hotel, unconscious on the bed next to an empty bottle of Oxycontin.  Sgt. Griffith says the man took 300 of the powerful pain killers, more than enough to kill someone.

"He had mixed the pills in water and drank it," Griffith said.

Officer Olney, who was a CPR instructor for 12 years, knew just what to do.

"CPR is pretty exhausting because you're using a lot of adrenaline pumping on some guy or girl's chest," Olney said.

To keep him alive, Olney kept performing CPR for 10 minutes until paramedics arrived.

The officers received a life-saving ribbon and uniform bar for saving the man.