I-TEAM VIDEO: Van rolls away from officer trying to save man’s life

RICHFIELD, Ohio -- The FOX 8 I-TEAM has obtained exclusive video that shows Richfield Police scrambling to a man having a medical emergency, only to watch him get dragged away by his own van.

It happened late last month. Police hurried to a call for a senior citizen who was unresponsive and having trouble breathing.

The video shows the man sitting in the driver’s seat of a van in his garage. An officer ran up and began to pull the man out to start CPR.  Then, suddenly, the van started moving.

Next, the video shows the van rolling, away dragging the patient.

For those involved, saving a life turned into a different kind of desperate rescue.

The officer and the man’s wife watched in horror for a moment, then they chased after the van down an icy driveway.

The van rolled for fifteen seconds, about 75 feet away, before crashing into the police car.

The officer then immediately caught up to the patient and began CPR. An ambulance arrived seconds later.

So how did this happen?

Remember, police found the man in distress sitting in the driver's seat.

After the wild scene, an officer can be heard reflecting back on the situation, saying the car had been in drive. The man needed help hit the gas.

The video shows the officer telling others at the scene, "Then I was pulling him out. Car was in drive. Car drove away and drug him."

Richfield Police and emergency crews got the patient to the hospital where the patient survived.

As of Friday, he was still fighting to overcome his medical issues.

The Richfield police chief told the I-TEAM, a vehicle rolling away from police is more likely to happen at a traffic stop along the road, not expected at a medical emergency with a van still in the garage.

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