MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - Two police officers came to an 89-year-old woman’s rescue after she fell on the floor and found herself trapped there for several days in her Miami Beach home.
Miami Beach Police Officers Whismick Charles and Pablo Gonzalez said they worked together as a team until they made sure Violeta Pilgrim was safe.
A family friend who was concerned about Pilgrim called Miami Beach Police for help. Little did they know she was trapped under her bed and had been there for six days.
“A concerned individual hasn’t heard from his friend, someone who he treats as his mother in over five days,” said Miami Beach Police Officer Ernesto Rodriguez. “He’s concerned. He calls police. We arrive.”
Body cam video captured Gonzalez as he talked to Charles near Pilgrim’s home, in the area of Second Street and Collins Avenue, just before they tried to make contact with her.
The officers knocked on Pilgrim’s front door, but there was no answer.
“They decided to come around the side of the building, the rear of the building,” Rodriguez said. “They started banging on windows.”
When asked why they decided to investigate further when Pilgrim did not answer the door, Gonzalez said, “Honestly, it was the family. They expressed that she was in there. With that [information it was] enough; we had to go in.”
That’s when they saw the woman on the floor.
“She was trapped in her mattress. She did not move from that position for six days,” said Gonzalez. “No food, no water, no bathroom breaks.”
One of the officers pulled the screen from the window and rescued Pilgrim.
“They were able to rescue an elderly female who had been lying, trapped under her bed for six days,” Rodriguez said.
“It’s surprising. I can’t go six minutes without food or water, so you can only imagine six days,” said Charles.
“It is a miracle, honestly,” said Gonzalez, “especially for her age. It is a miracle that she is alive.”
Body cam video captured the urgency in the officers’ voices. “Ma’am, do you hear me?” Gonzalez is heard shouting in Spanish.
“Officers dragged that white piece of concrete and they propped themselves above it and climbed into that unit,” Rodriguez said. “He later raised the mattress, raised the bed frame and pulled Ms. Pilgrim from underneath that mattress.”
Pilgrim has since been hospitalized and is recovering.
“She has a long road of recovery ahead of her, but she knows she has the Miami Beach Police Department now as an extended family,” Rodriguez said.
“There are many reasons why officers in Miami Beach sign up for this position,” said Charles. “We don’t sign up for the glory. We’re just out here doing our jobs.”
The two officers who worked to save the elderly woman were recognized by the police department for their actions.
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