Daring NJ police officer goes out on icy pond during storm, rescues drowning dog

A daring police officer volunteered to go out onto the ice during a snow storm to rescue a drowning dog, with faith t...

Posted: Dec 22, 2017 12:21 AM
Updated: Dec 22, 2017 12:21 AM

A daring police officer volunteered to go out onto the ice during a snow storm to rescue a drowning dog, with faith that his colleague and best friend would be able to pull them both out.

"I trust him with my life," Hopewell Township Police Officer Robert Voorhees said of his partner, Officer George Peterson.

When the officers arrived at a home on Pennington Harbourton Road on Dec. 15, they knew they had to act fast. Nisel, a 1-year-old Rottweiler, had fallen though thin ice and could not get out.

"I saw the dog go under for about five seconds and come back up and I knew we couldn't wait," Voorhees said.

Peterson said they could tell the dog was getting tired.

"She was not gonna last longer," Peterson said.

Carolyn Wooley, the dog's owner, said Nisel was playing in the backyard when she fell through the ice. Nisel is a working farm dog in training and she loves to swim, but she's still learning about the ice.

"I tried to get her out, but there was no way I could," Wooley said. "It was just frozen too far out."

After Wooley called 911, she said the fire department was the first to respond with a blow-up boat.

"But it takes time," she said, "and I'm watching them get it out and blowing it up and I was really getting more and more panicked that by the time they blew up the raft, that it would be too late."

That's when Voorhees and Peterson jumped into action.

Video taken from Peterson's body camera shows Voorhees crawling out onto the ice on his chest. A rope is tied around his waist. Peterson held on tight to the other end of the rope. Voorhees said he felt the freezing cold water seeping through his clothes, but he knew he just had to keep inching closer to the dog.

"It was not a good night to be outside. It was cold. It was snowing. It was probably 28 degrees," Peterson said.

Wooley can be heard yelling to her pup in the background on the video: "He's coming, Nisel!"

Luckily, Voorhees grabbed ahold of Nisel's collar without falling through the ice himself. He pulled the dog out of the water and Peterson pulled them both to safety.

"It was extremely brave. It was a totally, you know, no thought to himself and his safety. He could have been pulled in by the dog," Wooley said.

After being pulled from the pond, Nisel shivered for hours. Her tail is still a little sore from the incident, but other than that, she is a happy, healthy dog.

West Lafayette
Clear
75° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 71°
Feels Like: 75°
Kokomo
Clear
69° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 69°
Rensselaer
Broken Clouds
72° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 72°
Fowler
Broken Clouds
72° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 72°
Williamsport
Scattered Clouds
72° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 72°
Crawfordsville
Broken Clouds
68° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 68°
Frankfort
Clear
67° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 67°
Delphi
Scattered Clouds
74° wxIcon
Hi: 88° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 74°
Monticello
Scattered Clouds
74° wxIcon
Hi: 89° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 74°
Logansport
Clear
68° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 68°
Active Pattern Ahead
WLFI Radar
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 73287

Reported Deaths: 3036
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion15701725
Lake7496275
Elkhart480184
Allen3835163
St. Joseph342381
Hamilton2723104
Vanderburgh192213
Hendricks1871108
Cass17869
Johnson1741118
Porter129439
Clark120247
Tippecanoe118911
Madison94365
LaPorte89430
Howard88465
Kosciusko84712
Bartholomew78047
Marshall77422
Floyd77246
Monroe74630
Delaware71452
Dubois68712
Boone67246
Noble66329
Hancock64738
Vigo61910
Jackson5855
Warrick57930
LaGrange55710
Shelby54627
Grant52630
Dearborn49628
Morgan46734
Clinton4303
Henry37620
Wayne36810
White36110
Montgomery35221
Lawrence34227
Decatur33532
Harrison32723
Putnam2868
Miami2692
Scott26610
Daviess26420
Greene24634
Franklin24114
Jasper2342
DeKalb2304
Jennings22412
Gibson2214
Steuben2073
Ripley1997
Fayette1867
Carroll1852
Perry18412
Starke1777
Posey1700
Orange16924
Wabash1653
Fulton1642
Wells1622
Jefferson1602
Knox1510
Whitley1516
Washington1391
Tipton1379
Spencer1313
Huntington1223
Newton11810
Randolph1184
Clay1165
Sullivan1131
Adams962
Jay910
Owen871
Pulaski791
Rush764
Brown731
Fountain732
Blackford632
Ohio635
Benton610
Pike530
Parke511
Vermillion490
Switzerland460
Crawford440
Martin430
Union390
Warren221
Unassigned0202

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events