NewsNational News


Video: Yonkers police work with bystanders to lift vehicle, rescue baby trapped after crash

Screen Shot 2021-07-26 at 8.54.46 AM.png
Posted at 10:57 AM, Jul 26, 2021

YONKERS, N.Y. — Body cameras captured the incredible moment police and bystanders lifted a vehicle to rescue a baby who was struck by the car with her mother in New York on Friday.

WARNING: The video below is graphic and some may find it disturbing.

The Yonkers Police Department says 43-year-old David Poncurak was driving a 2005 Hyundai Elantra when he struck the pedestrians and continued to accelerate into the storefront of a barbershop at about 8:30 a.m. ET.

Police say officers Rocco Fusco and Paul Samoyedny were in a nearby bagel shop getting breakfast when they heard the collision, went to investigate and found the 36-year-old mother down in the wreckage of the crash.

The officers then realized that the woman’s 8-month-old daughter was also injured and trapped under the vehicle.

With the help of bystanders, police say the two officers lifted the vehicle off of the baby so she could be rescued and given medical aid.

The officers then reportedly rendered medical aid to the mother and child while requesting the necessary additional resources to the scene.

Police say the mother sustained a serious femur fracture, and the baby suffered a skull fracture along with 3rd-degree burns to her back and foot. Both were transported to a local trauma center to be treated for their injuries, but they are expected to survive.

The owner of the barbershop sustained a minor laceration, according to police. No other injuries were reported.

Police say the driver, Poncurak, was detained at the scene, as was a female who was a passenger in the vehicle. Neither sustained any reported injuries.

According to police, Poncurak had a suspended license and investigators found an alcoholic beverage in the vehicle.

As a result of the crash, Poncurak was placed under arrest and charged with driving while intoxicated, vehicular assault 2nd, and aggravated unlicensed operation 2nd.

In an interview with CNN, the officers said they and the bystanders at the scene jumped into action to help the baby without hesitation.

"I think the both of us in our careers have experienced some horrific scenes,” said officer Samoyedny. “I'm sure most of the bystanders and the people in the community haven't, but they, it was absolutely no hesitation. Everybody there did something to help. It was unbelievable. The credit really goes to them, and the mom, for holding on to that baby for dear life."

"I was just glad we were able to react,” said officer Fusco. “As a father of four kids, it was really intensified the situation for me when I saw the baby under there and the arms moving and not able to move any other direction away from the car."