CPD officers rescue two men from burning car in Gresham

Image 1 of 4

CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -- Four Chicago police officers and a 15-year-old boy are being credited for rescuing two men from a burning car in the Gresham neighborhood.

Neighbors along South Loomis say they woke up around 2 a.m. Sunday to the sounds of crashes and explosions. Chicago police officers Eric King, Phoebe Flores, Josue Pivaral and Shadai Sweiss were the first on the scene. They found a car engulfed in flames with the dashboard starting to melt. The driver had been able to get out, but two men were unconscious from the crash and stuck in the smoke-filled car.

The officers tried yelling to wake them up, but it didn't work. That's when 15-year-old John Sweet came running from his house with a fire extinguisher.

“He was like, ‘Officer, here's the fire extinguisher!’ and that made my day,” Sweiss said.

“I like helping people. I saw that they were in danger,” said Sweet. “So, I just thought about ‘Oh, fire extinguisher!’”

The officers say that fire extinguisher bought them time to wake up one of the passengers, who was able to crawl out on his own. Officers used the fire extinguisher to smash the window so they could pull out the last passenger.

“We pulled him out of there as quick as we could,” said Officer Josue Pivaral.

All three were hospitalized in stable condition and are expected to be okay.

Officers said they were just doing their job, but the neighborhood kid who helped them went above and beyond.

“He was my hero that night because I was there with no gloves with my hands and he gave be something to work with,” said Sweiss.

The driver of the car, 23-year-old Robert Sanderson, was given four tickets including driving on suspension and failure to reduce speed. Police said they are still investigating why Sanderson was driving so fast and checking to see if alcohol was a factor.