On Wed., Oct. 27 at approximately 12:30 p.m., Lower Township Police Officers rescued a man from a fresh water pond after the man had entered the water to assist animal control officers in capturing a swan that had been tangled in fishing line.
Lower Township Animal Control Officer Steven Parker had been called to the campground earlier in an attempt to capture a large swan that had fishing line around its beak and wing.
Lake Laurie maintenance worker Joseph Tobin had entered the water to assist the animal control officer. Tobin stated that he underestimated how cold the water was and began to cramp up, however he was able to grab onto a float in the middle of the pond.
ACO Parker, then requested Police assistance at the scene,
Lower Township Police Officers, Sergeant John Chew, Corporal Edward Dougherty and Patrolman C. J. Ryan all responded to the campground.
Corporal Dougherty was able to reach the victim utilizing a rescue disc. The large orange disc that resembles a frisbee with yellow floating rope wrapped around it, has been carried in Lower Township Police cars since 1998.
Lower Township Police Chief Edward Donohue praised the efforts of his Officers rioting that Corporal Dougherty was able to make a perfect throw of the device, which the victim was able to grab onto after which Police Officers pulled him to shore with the assistance of ACO Parker.
Chief Donohue noted that Corporal Dougherty has submitted his retirement papers and will go out on leave shortly with his last day of work being sometime in early November,
“I can’t think of a better way to end your career than by saving someone’s life,” Donohue stated.
Tobin was treated at the scene by Lower Township Rescue Squad, but refused transportation to the hospital.