‘It felt like hours’: Lafayette police officer brings strangled woman back to life

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LAFAYETTE, Ind. (Feb. 5, 2016) -- A quick-thinking police officer brought a woman back to life after she was left strangled in a hotel hallway.

Officer Kevin Cooney, who has been on the force just less than two years, was called to a domestic disturbance at the Town Place Suites at 12:30 a.m. Wednesday.

Cooney said he initially expected to arrive to a fight, but instead found a woman lying unresponsive in a 3rd floor hallway.

"Her eyes looked pretty lifeless. ... I checked for a pulse on her arm and on her carotid artery, I didn’t find a pulse," Cooney said.

Using his training, Cooney started immediately to administer CPR.

"Her eyes started to open, she came to a little bit, and I just started talking to her. I said 'Hey, you need to breathe, you need to breathe on your own.' I said 'Take a deep breath' and she did but then she would sort of fade away again," Cooney said.

Cooney's partner arrived shortly afterwards and it took a few more minutes for paramedics to get there.

"It felt like hours," Cooney said. "I would find a pulse and it was strong and then the next time I checked there wasn’t one. There was one time that she turned her head toward me and she took a hold of my hand."

By the time help arrived, the woman was breathing shallowly. Cooney said firefighters were able to give her an oxygen mask and by the time she got to the hospital, she was in critical but stable condition.

Asked if he believed he saved the woman's life, Cooney humbly said, "I think it's fair to say that, yeah."

Cooney said he observed marks on the woman's neck and a large cut on her forehead.

In less than an hour, officers arrested 26-year-old Brett Seyfried for domestic battery and stragulation. Seyfried was still in the Tippecanoe County Jail Friday but had yet to be formally charged.

Cooney told FOX59 he wanted to thank a Good Samaritan, a woman who made the call to the hotel desk and 911 about the unconscious victim and who stayed with him, talking to the victim as he tried to revive her.

"She was not even from Lafayette, she was from out of town... I don’t know why she was here but she was here at the right place at the right time, so I’m thankful that she was there," Cooney said.

He was quick to take the limelight off of himself, but he said that he has thought a lot about that night and it's a call he will never forget.

"I’m a Christian and I believe that God sustains life and there’s a sanctity of life, so I’m glad I could be there to do my part to show that I care for another person’s life, even a total stranger, when someone else clearly didn’t care for their life," Cooney said.