GREENFIELD, Ind. — The Greenfield Police Department (GPD) said a woman may have died if not for the quick actions of 5-year veteran Patrolman Blake Crull.
According to police, around 1:30 a.m. on September 9, Patrolman Crull drove upon a personal injury crash in the 4200 block of East US 40.
Crull saw a vehicle had flipped on its top and was on fire. (See dashboard cam footage below) The car came to rest in the front lawn of Gail Locker.
“You can go out there, and see she came right off of 40, and she hit that culvert out there,” shows Locker pointing toward the highway. “The other day I came out and there’s a chunk of the car next to the porch.”
GPD said Crull ran to the vehicle that was upside down and found a 36-year-old Heather Fischer from Greenfield, who was trapped and seriously injured.
According to Greenfield police, who are citing a Hancock County Sheriff’s Office Report, the Fischer’s car had first collided with a vehicle that was either slowed or stopped along East US 40 in a construction zone that had been reduced to one lane. Police believe the driver of that other vehicle was drunk.
“There is no doubt had Officer Crull not been here to rescue her out of that car, we may be doing a completely different story today,” explained Greenfield Police Chief Jeff Rasche. “He knew, he’s been an officer for five years, that he was going to have a very short time period to get her out of that car.”
After searching for a way to get the woman out of the burning car, Crull was able to pull her through a side window to safety.
Video: Patrolman Crull pulls a woman from her vehicle around the 1:55 mark.
GPD said parts of the engine compartment began exploding just moments later.
“Most of the time people see in a movie that a car explodes, but they don’t happen that way in real life,” details Chief Rasche. “There are points of that vehicle that will, once it catches fire, explode. [They are] some minor explosions. The way cars are built today, there’s lots of combustibles in a car.”
Fischer was taken to IU Methodist hospital with very serious injuries.
GPD identified the driver of that second vehicle as Arturo A. Casimiro, 46, of Indianapolis.
Casimiro was arrested and booked at the Hancock County Jail, where he faces pending charges that include operating a vehicle while intoxicated and driving while suspended.
The crash is being investigated by the Hancock County Sheriff’s Department.