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BWC: Fla. PD marine unit officer saves unconscious man in circling boat

Video shows Sarasota PD Officer Michael Skinner using his boat to push the runaway boat into a sea wall before climbing in, cutting the engine and rendering aid to the man

By Joanna Putman

SARASOTA, Fla. — Body-worn camera footage shows an officer rescuing a man who had become unconscious while driving his boat, the Sarasota Police Department shared on Facebook.

On May 3, Officer Michael Skinner of the Sarasota Police Marine Unit found a man unconscious on a boat circling the inner coastal waterway, according to the post. Video of the incident shows he quickly intervened by intercepting and stabilizing the boat against a seawall to prevent further danger.

He can then be seen jumping into the other boat, cutting the engine. A bystander standing on the shore also jumped into the boat to help. Skinner and the bystander helped to keep the boat close to the sea wall until paramedics arrived to render aid to the man.

“I’m incredibly proud of Officer Skinner’s quick response and selfless actions,” Sarasota Police Chief Rex Troche stated. “His bravery exemplifies the dedication of our law enforcement officers to serving and protecting our community.”

The boater was transported to Sarasota Memorial Hospital and is expected to make a full recovery, according to the post. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is currently investigating the circumstances surrounding the incident to ensure a comprehensive understanding of the events.