Vermont state trooper rescues young girl after falling into icy pond – PPT News

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A Vermont state trooper is recalling the heroic rescue of an 8-year-old girl who fell into a frozen pond.

Michelle Archer told “America’s Newsroom” Tuesday she was on routine patrol on December 17 when a call came in that the girl was drowning in the freezing water.

Archer arrived in four minutes and jumped into the pond to pull the unresponsive girl to safety.

“It was certainly over my head,” Archer said of the water. “I was told just before going in that it was eight feet in the center.”


Vermont State Police released bodycam footage of Archer and fellow trooper Keith Cote making the daring rescue.

The 8-year-old and her sibling were playing near or on the frozen surface of a private pond near where they lived when the ice gave way.

An elderly neighbor who was unable to swim managed to help one sibling out of the water before Archer arrived at the scene.

Archer utilized a flotation device kept in the back of her cruiser to bring the child onto the snowy shore. When the child was on land, she began making noises, alerting the police that she was still alive.

Cote took the child from Archer and rendered life-saving first aid before rescue teams put her into an ambulance and took her to a nearby hospital.

“There wasn’t a whole lot of thinking going on. Something was taking over – training. It was the opposite of panic,” Archer told local outlet Vermont News First. 

Vermont State Trooper Keith Cote takes the 8-year-old from Archer to render first aid and transport her to the ambulance for life-saving care. (Vermont State Police)

Archer and the girl miraculously did not suffer any negative health impacts from the freezing water. 

“Later that day or the next day, I was told that she was being released from the hospital, and making a full recovery and had no lasting effects of any issues or hypothermia,” Archer said Tuesday. 

When asked what she would say to young girls who want to pursue law enforcement as a career, she said, “I would say just jump into it if that’s what they are wanting to do. I had great mentors when I first started the job, a couple being female. If it’s something they’re looking to do, it’s certainly possible, and I think they should do it.” 

Archer, Cote, and the property owner who assisted in the rescue were commended by Vermont State Police for their conduct. 

All three received the state police’s Lifesaving Award for their actions.


Fox News’ Timothy H.J. Nerozzi contributed to this report.

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