LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. — In an incredible moment of unity, Lawrenceville police officers and people nearby are being recognized for lifting a vehicle that had a 19-year-old driver pinned underneath it.
It all unfolded Sept. 13 at 11 p.m., when Lawrenceville Police Sgt. Peterson was on traffic enforcement duty at SR 316. He had spotted a speeding driver, according to the department.
Following the driver, Peterson drove up to an overturned vehicle - the same one he spotted speeding, police said. Two people managed to exit the vehicle but the driver had been partially ejected through the sunroof; his upper body and head were squeezed in between the car and the roadway.
"The driver's airway was getting obstructed and was having problems breathing," LPD said.
In the body camera video, Peterson is seen checking on the driver and then rallying those nearby to quickly help. Police described that the young driver was stuck under the 3,600-pound vehicle.
"You, you and me, we're going to lift this car up right now," Peterson said. "Someone get in there and pull him out."
On the count of three, Peterson orders everyone to gather their strength and lift the vehicle. It appears more people joined in the effort.
"Come on y'all, we got this," one person is heard saying.
Several police officers have joined in the effort at this point and a few bystanders contribute their strength. Dashcam video from Peterson's patrol car shows at least five people on one side of the vehicle.
"He's out," someone is heard saying, as the driver appears from under the vehicle. An officer notifies the driver that an ambulance is en route.
"The 19-year-old driver sustained several injuries related to the crash and continues receiving medical treatment at a local hospital," LPD said. "The actions of the four officers and the good Samaritans likely saved his life."