State trooper, dispatcher honored for heroism in saving 17-year-old girl

Updated: Sep. 2, 2020 at 10:28 PM EDT
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RIPLEY COUNTY, In. (FOX19) - An Indiana state trooper and a dispatcher are being hailed as heroes after helping save a woman from a burning car.

Sgt. Jared Black works out of the ISP post in Versailles, In. According to Black, a 17-year-old girl called 911 in late August after she crashed her car on Country Road 600 and noticed her car was on fire. Dispatcher Brittany Herbert worked with Black, who was able to pull the girl from her car before the flames engulfed it.

“When I arrived, I found a vehicle on its side and on fire,” Black recalled. “It was pretty stressful initially trying to get her out.”

Black knew he had to act quickly.

“I was able to break the sunroof using a window punch,” he said, “and I was able to extricate the driver through the sunroof.”

The girl, Chloe Strassel, was ok.

“Initially you don’t have time to be scared, you just go to work,” Black said.

Indiana State Representative Randy Frye honored Black and the dispatcher for their heroism Tuesday.

Black says Herbert is a newer dispatcher and credits her for playing a key role in saving Strassel’s life.

“The girl who was involved in the accident didn’t know where she was, so (Herbert) was able to attain her location through the 911 system and get it to us,” Black explained.

Black had experienced one such incident before, making him just the right man for the job.

“In 2013 I was involved in a similar situation in Jackson County, where myself and some other police officers rescued a man from a burning vehicle,” Black said.

Strassel escaped with some cuts and bruises but was not burned. Black says she inhaled some smoke as well, but she has since made a full recovery.

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