Two Kane County sheriff’s deputies were commended Tuesday for heroic work by Kane County Sheriff Ron Hain during a Kane County board meeting, including one who dove into a pond to save a woman.
When Deputy Luke Weston was patrolling on the evening of Oct. 15 in Carpentersville, he found and subdued three armed suspects wanted in an armed robbery in Hampshire without use of any lethal force. His actions to avoid the use of lethal force comes at a time when police-related shootings are rising in communities across the U.S.
“For him to engage with three violent individuals alone without blinking an eye and safely taking them into custody without a shot being fired, while at least two of them are armed, is quite remarkable,” Hain said. “His ability to de-escalate and navigate the situation, while we celebrate many other deputies on the county board, we thought this one was very noble.”
Weston confronted the juvenile robbers at a gas station near Walmart on Warner Street after responding to a report of a robbery nearby.
The sheriff explained it was the split-second decision that distinguished Weston’s “noble” actions. When Weston saw two people in the backseat supposedly arming themselves, Weston calmly and directly began giving commands, Hain said.
“He was able to secure the individuals and keep them away from firearms as opposed to waiting for that to occur, waiting a minute longer and waiting for them to arm themselves and decide to take action against them,” Hain said.
A .45-caliber handgun and .22-caliber handgun later were found in the vehicle where the two men supposedly were reaching for firearm, according to the sheriff’s office.
A less violent but equally dangerous event occurred the following month. Another split-second decision did not miss Hain’s eye.
On the cold Thanksgiving morning in Huntley, Deputy Jerry Krawcyzk dove into a retention pond to rescue a driver from her sinking vehicle. Krawcyzk was responding to a car crash on the road which eventually swerved into the water. Khadjia Oluwakemi Osowemimo told Krawcyzk upon his arrival that she was cold and couldn’t swim. He grabbed her and brought her to safety just before the Huntley Fire Department arrived.
“I remember talking to him right after the incident. He said he didn’t hesitate to take off his duty belt and dive into the water and swim out to the vehicle. He said when he got up on the car, he noticed that there were child seats in the back and fortunately there were no children in the vehicle it was just the female driver. He was able to remove her from the vehicle filled with water and get her to safety before the car became submerged,” Hain said.