Girl, 11, Rescued After Fall Through Ice

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A police officer and a volunteer firefighter are being credited with saving an 11-year-old girl who fell through the ice on Great South Bay in Sayville, according to Suffolk County officials.

    The girl, identified only as Sarah, was apparently walking a neighbor's dog named Ace, a one year old poodle-maltese mix when she fell.

    Ace apparently pulled the girl out onto the frozen bay, said a police spokesperson, and she fell through the ice about fifty yards off shore.

    The girl's screams alerted a neighbor who called 911.

    Suffolk police officer Matthew DeMatteo responded, crawling to the girl and pulling her from four feet of water. As the two walked back to shore, they broke through the ice again, said police.

    Luckily for them, Sayville firefighter Chris Gonzales had also responded to the scene and he threw a rope to the girl and the police officer, pulling them from the frigid water.

    Fire Chief Pantano said his team "arrived on scene and Suffolk County Police had already rescued the girl from the water."  He said crews weren't yet aware that the dog was also still in the water.

    "The officer went in with no equipment and rescued the girl," Pantano said.   He praised the officer's bravery and reminded residents that "no  ice is safe ice.  It may look secure, but's not.  It's definitely not."

    Both Sarah and officer DeMatteo are being treated at Stony Brook University hospital. Ace the dog was also rescued by fire department personnel.