Resident, pet saved from house fire, Brevard County deputies say

Victim taken to hospital for further medical care


MERRITT ISLAND, Fla. – A Brevard County sheriff's deputy rescued a woman from her burning house Saturday and one of his colleagues saved one of her dogs, the Sheriff's Office said.

Deputies Jesse Doucette, Ben Fischer and Robert Bennett of the East Precinct arrived at the residential fire on Lynne Drive in Merritt Island early Friday.

Doucette was the first to arrive. The Sheriff's Office said as he got out of his patrol car, he heard bystanders yelling, "She's still in there."

The deputy ran to the home as the fire was spreading and was able to see a female inside slumped over in a wheelchair, the Sheriff's Office said. Doucette entered and crawled through the heat and smoke, making his way to the unconscious victim.

The Sheriff's Office said Doucette dragged the victim to safety from the burning home, where he and Fisher began lifesaving first-aid efforts until fire rescue personnel arrived.

The victim was taken to a hospital for further medical care, deputies said.

As Doucette and Fisher cared for the resident, Bennett arrived and began looking for any other occupants. The Sheriff's Office said he found a dog lying inside the home and was able to crawl to the unconscious dog and drag it from the home.

Bennett utilized an oxygen tank provided by fire rescue to provide aid until the dog started breathing again, deputies said. A second dog got out of the home on its own and appeared to be uninjured.

Deputies said Sheriff's Office Animal Control personnel arrived and treated the pets for smoke inhalation. The dogs were taken for safekeeping while the resident recovers.

"I am extremely proud of Deputies Doucette, Fischer and Bennett for their incredible service to our community," Sheriff Wayne Ivey said. "Because of their abilities, professionalism and passion, a victim and her pets' lives were saved."

Deputies said it is believed the fire was likely the cause of a faulty space heater in one of the bedrooms.

"I would also like to thank our incredible partners at Brevard County Fire Rescue for their live-saving service," Ivey said. "Please join me in thanking everyone involved for their commitment and dedication to the Brevard County Sheriff's Office and protecting our citizens."