EL CENTRO — On Wednesday, March 4, , at 12:33 a.m., El Centro Police Officers were dispatched to a fire at the 1200 block of Aurora Avenue. Officers Adrian Hirales and Steven Singh arrived within minutes to the sound of breaking glass on the scene. They noticed the residence at this location was engulfed in flames and smoke was billowing from the interior.
As Officer Hirales approached the front of the house, he was met be a female resident who stated her husband was still inside one of the bedrooms. Officer Hirales notified the responding officers and fire personnel of this information.
Officers Hirales and Singh could hear a male’s voice inside the residence, but were unable to locate him due to the dense smoke. Both officers then went to the back of the house and looked for a way to make entry into the residence.
They forced open a rear door and entered the house in search of the male occupant. Due to the volume and density of the smoke, they struggled to locate him and continued calling to him. Sergeant John Seaman and Officers Jill Crothers and Jesus Viesca remained at the front of the residence attempting to call the male to them and assist their fellow officers.
Within a few minutes, and after forcing a bedroom door open, Officers Singh and Hirales reached the male. Because of the spreading fire and intense smoke, the way back out the way they entered was blocked. Instead they broke a sliding glass door and then carried the 80 year‐old resident to the front yard.
Officer Crothers then assisted in taking both residents across the street where they were treated by paramedics. Officers Singh and Hirales were treated at the El Centro Regional Medical Center and were released to full duty later in the morning.
Robert Sawyer, Commander of the El Centro Police Department, stated his police department was very proud of all five of the officers involved in this tragic event. They were grateful the men assisted the resident’s and ensured their safety. The actions of these officers show their dedication and commitment to protect and serve our community.