An Oakland County sheriff’s deputy is being credited with saving the lives of two men Thursday when both were seen unconscious in a moving pickup truck after apparently overdosing on heroin.
Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard praised the work of Deputy Craig Stout, a 34-year veteran.
“But for the training and quick thinking of Deputy Stout and the assistance of two alert motorists, the families of the men in that truck would be planning two funerals today,” the sheriff said.
According to a news release, Stout was on patrol in Orion Township when he was dispatched at 11:20 a.m. to the area of Dutton and Interpark Drive; he was instructed to investigate the report of a pickup truck moving slowly into traffic on eastbound Dutton east of the traffic light at Lapeer Road near the border of Auburn Hills and Orion Township.
Warning: Video contains explicit language.
Both the driver and the passenger were reported to be unconscious and slumped over inside the truck.
An alert motorist followed the truck and called 911 while a second motorist left his own vehicle and was able to run alongside the pickup truck, open the door and stop the vehicle. Stout arrived moments later and saw that both the driver and passenger were unconscious. Stout determined the driver was breathing but the passenger was not breathing and turning blue.
Stout quickly removed the passenger from the truck, administered Naloxone — more commonly known as Narcan — and began performing CPR. Dashcam video and audio from the deputy recorded the urgency of the rescue
“Come on, breathe!” Stout can be heard shouting at the man on a tape recording. “Come on! Come on! Breathe! Come on, buddy!”
Stout continued to perform chest compressions as paramedics from the Orion Township Fire Department arrived to assist, as did Auburn Hills police. The passenger, later determined to be a resident of Quincy, Kentucky, ultimately began labored breathing on his own.
“He’s trying to breathe, but not very good,” Stout told paramedics. “He’s got a pulse.”
The passenger began to regain consciousness. He was restless and asked to stand up. He admitted to rescuers he had taken heroin. Prescription narcotics were later found in the pickup truck.
“We’re going to get a blanket on you here in a second, man,” the paramedic tells the passenger. “We’re just checking you out because man, you were dead. Let me just reiterate that for you, you were dead! So just hang tight for a minute and we’re going to do what we need to do.”
The passenger wanted to get up and said he was cold.
“I know you are cold right now and I know you’re purple,” Stout told the passenger. “But you were dead a minute ago.”
“I appreciate you guys, seriously,” the passenger responded.
The driver was later examined by paramedics. Both the driver and the passenger were taken to McLaren Oakland Hospital for further observation.
“Our deputies go through extensive training for situations just like this,” Bouchard said. “I applaud the two motorists who observed what was happening and called us, and the life-saving skills demonstrated by Deputy Stout. It was a good result from what would have been a tragedy.”