TULSA, Okla. (KTUL/CNN) - A quick-thinking Oklahoma deputy kept a terrifying accident from becoming a tragedy after a 2-year-old girl fell into traffic from her mother’s moving van.
Tulsa County Deputy John Harris was in the perfect spot to save the day Monday night in North Tulsa, Oklahoma. In the middle of a traffic stop, Harris was less than 30 feet away when a toddler fell out of a moving van.
Harris took off running into the road, putting his life in danger to save the 2-year-old girl.
"She was just terrified… She had no idea what had just happened to her, and as I scoop her up, she just looks up at me. I'll just never forget that face,” he said.
The deputy brought the toddler back to his patrol car. Her mother, who had realized what happened, arrived shortly afterward. She allegedly admitted the girl and her siblings were not in car seats or wearing seat belts.
"I know after speaking with the mom that she was very thankful,” Harris said.
Luckily, the 2-year-old only received a few cuts and scrapes. Her mother received a ticket but was not arrested because the incident was deemed an accident.
"Although serious, it wasn't a tragedy, and it could have been a lot worse,” said Tulsa County Sheriff Vic Regalado. "We hope that the mother will take this as a life lesson and buckle her children up later."
Regalado calls Harris one of the many unsung heroes patrolling Tulsa’s streets, risking their own lives to save another. But Harris says he was just in the right place at the right time.
"We were all just happy that the little girl was OK. I mean, that was the main point: that she’s OK,” Harris said.