A routine traffic stop for a Maine State Police Trooper was anything but ordinary when he saved a man from overdosing on heroin and prevented a possible crash, too.
Trooper Douglas Cropper pulled over a man speeding in a Volkswagon Jetta around 6:15 a.m. on Friday in Portland, Maine.
The vehicle had been moving at 15 mph over the speed limit, so Cropper took the man's driver's license and registration, and returned to his cruiser to write him a ticket.
When Cropper returned to the vehicle with the ticket, he found the man unresponsive with his head tilted back and mouth open.
The dash cam video from Cropper’s cruiser shows him trying to wake the man up, dragging him out of the car onto the street and performing CPR, reports Portland Press Herald. The video may be viewed below.
“I thought he had nodded off,” Cropper said. “Then he started to turn blue from lack of oxygen.”
Cropper called for emergency personnel via dispatch, and continued to try and resuscitate the man, whose pulse was not registering.
An emergency room nurse, Leon Chick, was driving by and saw Cropper on the side of the highway with the man on the ground. He pulled over and began applying chest compressions, with Cropper eventually taking over.
The man began making gurgling sounds and woke up.
“I had my hand on his chest and his heart was pounding when he was coming around,” Cropper said. “His color started coming back a little bit. He was breathing a lot stronger on his own.”
Emergency personnel administered Narcan to the man when they arrived on the scene, which is used to reverse the effects of drugs such as heroin.
The man regained the ability to walk but was still dazed.
Cropper and the man have spoken and he admitted to using heroin in the parking lot of a Dunkin’ Donuts before driving on the highway to go to work. According to Cropper, the man was muscular (similar to a body builder), owned a nice car, and was employed.
It was the second time that week the man had overdosed and had to be resuscitated.
“This gentleman just overdosed three days ago,” Cropper said. “Portland dealt with him, he still had large scarring on his chest from where his friends were doing sternum rubs.”
“He said he needed a kick in the head,” Cropper recounted. “‘I said this is the kick you get.'”
The man has not been charged, although police did find drug paraphernalia in his vehicle. He was issued a traffic citation.
The man’s name has not been released due to health privacy laws.
Cropper is happy he pulled the man over when he did, as he may have prevented a high-speed crash that could have injured or killed other drivers on the road.
“Who knows how much farther along the road he would have gone and started to overdose, drive off the road and killed himself — or even worse, crashed into someone else, some innocent person going to work?” Cropper said.
This is not the first heroic deed Cropper has done on the job. In 2012, he positioned his patrol car in the path of a wrong-way driver on the highway before it would have crashed into oncoming traffic, reports Central Maine.