Caught on camera: Officer saves choking woman during traffic stop

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An Austin, Texas, police officer is being hailed as a hero for saving a woman who was choking during a traffic stop. (WLS)

An Austin, Texas, police officer is being hailed as a hero for saving a woman who was choking during a traffic stop.

On the same day Austin police worked two-officer involved shootings that left three people dead, this officer was on the other side of town saving a life.

On July 5, Officer Dustin Clinkscales pulled over a woman he thought was driving while talking on a cellphone, KXAN-TV reports. As he walks toward the car, the driver door immediately opens. The 30-year-old woman couldn't talk or breathe, KVUE-TV reports.

When he walked up to her car, he realized she was choking and calling for help. The reason she was holding a cell phone, is because she was trying to call 911. Clinkscales performed the Heimlich maneuver until the item in her throat dislodged. He then saved her from a possible head injury when she passed out and fell. It turns out that the woman is the daughter of a fellow Austin police detective.

"I've never been on that side where a relative's been involved. I've always been on the other side where I'm responding or any other officer here is responding to a total stranger they're giving first aid," Clinkscales said.

The county EMS wrote a commendation letter to Officer Clinkscales saying, "had it not been for the quick and exact actions of Officer Clickscales, the patient would have most certainly had a negative outcome."

The detective says his daughter was very grateful for Clinkscales' quick thinking and action.

"At first, it's kind of shocking because I've never been on the side. I've always been on the other side responding," said Detective Duncan Dunn, the victim's father. "She's very thankful. She says she was lucky he was there."

On a day with so much violence that captured headlines in Austin, it was an untold story until now.

"It's really amazing how quickly he recognized that something was wrong, how quickly he acted and cleared her passage way," said Cmdr. Michael Eveleth.
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