Friday, June 11, 2010

HCSO: Deputy drowns attempting to rescue family dog

This is very sad.

Credit: HCSO

HCSO: Deputy drowns attempting to rescue family dog

by staff

Posted on June 11, 2010 at 8:10 AM

Updated today at 9:54 AM

BAYTOWN, Texas—Crews found the body of a Harris County Sheriff’s Deputy early Friday who drowned while attempting to rescue his dog from a canal, according to investigators.

Investigators said Deputy Eddie Wotipka lived on West Cedar Bayou Lynchburg at Thompson Road. He had just returned home from his evening shift Thursday around 11:45 p.m. when his wife and the family dog came outside to greet him.

Neighbors told Wotipka about a pack of dogs at a nearby canal and he went to investigate, with his own dog following. The family dog either jumped or fell into the canal and Wotipka jumped in to try and save him, according to investigators.

The wife then jumped in to help her husband and both found themselves in trouble with the strong currents and swift waters. Neighbors were able to pull the wife to safety, but they could not reach the deputy.

Neighbors said Wotipka went under the water twice, and did not resurface the second time.

Emergency crews searched the waters for hours, but could not locate the deputy. They finally found him around 5:30 a.m. and a brigade of deputies rushed him to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Deputy Wotipka had been with the force since 1993.

The dog also died.

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