Deputies' heroic actions squelch fire, save taxpayers thousands

Deputies' heroic actions squelch fire, save taxpayers thousands

CRISP CO., GA (WALB) - The Sheriff is working on a way to honor two deputies and two detention officers whose quick action saved taxpayers money and may have saved lives. If a fire in the jail's kitchen had spread, it could have put lives in danger and shut down this whole facility.

The work of four sworn officers kept that from happening.

Tuesday was the first trip back to the now-repaired kitchen for those law officers. Their actions here last Wednesday are being called heroic.

"They went above and beyond their call of duty," said Major Joey Arzola.

Surveillance video shows the fire breaking out in the dishwashing room of the kitchen, smoke quickly filling the kitchen, knocking back Rebecca Sutton.

The officers could have run to safety, but they ran toward the fire. First officer David Wade, then Deputy Devosie Jones found an extinguisher.

Deputy Sammy John undid his tie and went in. Crawling up to the fire, they acted quickly.

"I don't think anything went through any of our heads. We had a situation that appeared to be out of control at the time and we knew we had to move fast," said David Wade, a part-time Detention Officer.

"It was just 'go, move, make something happen,'" said Deputy Devosie Jones.

They knew the safety of the inmates was a major concern.

"Let's try to put it out because we have 200 people in here that we're accountable for and like I said the inmates safety is a top priority," said Deputy Jones.

The room was dark, and they had to lie on the floor to fight the fire that was quickly spreading.

"We knew that we could attack this thing as a combined group. We looked out for each other and contained the fire until the firefighters got here," said Wade.

It's something they never thought they'd have to do, but they would do it again in a heartbeat.

"I mean that's why we signed up for the jobs and if I have to put my life on the line again for it, I would," said Deputy John.

"We a family. And we took care of each other," said Detention Officer Rebecca Sutton.

Sheriff Hancock said repairs cost $90,000 but could have exceeded $250,000 had the fire spread through the jail.

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