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Thursday, 09 July 2015 17:20

Woman Injured After Shallow Water Jump

KNIGHT'S FERRY - A woman was airlifted to the hospital Thursday afternoon after suffering injuries from a jump into shallow water.

The incident was reported at the covered bridge at Knight's Ferry just before 5:00pm. According to the Stanislaus Consolidated Fire Protection District, the woman suffered critical injuries.

An air ambulance responded to the scene to transport the patient for care.

We will post further updates as they become available.

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Published in News
Thursday, 02 January 2014 16:48

Autistic Child Rescued

A firefighter embraces little Isaac Sprague after an intense search lasting nearly 8 hours near Hilmar. A firefighter embraces little Isaac Sprague after an intense search lasting nearly 8 hours near Hilmar.

HILMAR - Hearing the weak cries of little Isaac Sprague, although very saddening, could not be a more relieving sound.

Isaac, a cute as a button 7 year old boy with autism, had gone missing early Thursday Morning. According to Captain BJ Jones with the Merced County Sheriff's Office, a call into the department was received at about 11:30 am. The child had gone missing while spending time with his grandfather at a park near Hills Ferry Road and Kelley Road.

"We were working down here," Isaac's Grandfather, Michael Sprague explained during the rescue.

"We were setting up a new course for an archery shoot they're gonna have. We got kinda distracted, but I've never had this kind of problem with him before. I've been bringing him down here for four years. I never thought he would walk away or go very far."

Captain Jones explained the separation time between Isaac and his grandfather was a matter of minutes. When the group couldn't find Isaac after searching as much as they could, they called for help.

"You just can't even comprehend the feeling," Isaac's Grandfather continued.

"You think this kind of thing wouldn't happen to you. He's the type of kid who usually is either right next to you all the time no matter what your doing, or stays put in one place. He even closes himself in the car and won't let anybody in."

Captain Jones explained they took careful consideration of Isaac's autism. The Sheriff's aerial unit was called out because he likes helicopters. In addition to the use of it's thermal imaging camera, the spot light was used hoping it would catch little Isaac's attention. Isaac can not communicate because of his autism.

Bloodhounds, search teams and even divers were called out to the scene from various agencies and counties. The cold was beginning to set in as the situation began to look grim. Night had fallen several hours prior. The mood was described as stoic.

Then a miracle unfolded right before our camera. A Ranger ATV sped into the command post carrying a little bundle. Rescuers carried Isaac's cold body over to a group of waiting paramedics.

Isaac was weak. Disoriented and soaking wet, but alive.

A firefighter pulled his coat off and wrapped it around the boy while medics began to strip him of his wet clothing.

"The aviation unit saw something," Captain Jones explained.

"They didn't know what it was, but they considered it a source they could look at. Members of the dive team made their way to the area and caught what sounded like a faint moan."

Divers continued to listen and made their way to the sound. They found Isaac chest deep in water near a sand bar. Clearly affected by the cold, he was recovered and quickly rushed to medics.

"It's a relief," said the grandfather. "I think I'm going to go home and die now."

Deputies had searched this area earlier in the day, and Isaac was not there. Captain Jones said the idea that little Isaac was moving throughout the search had been discussed and a very likely scenario.

"There's no way he was there the whole time," Jones said.

The final moments of the rescue were even very emotional and impactful for the team of first responders at the scene. Family members at the command post held each other and cried in relief.

"We took a moment to reflect and standing around with some of the other deputies out here, it's like can you get your heart started again," said Jones.

"When it comes to children, we throw everything we have into it. We're very blessed all the way around that this is how it turned out. I'm in disbelief, but at the same time filled with joy. It's a great story."

Published in Breaking News
Thursday, 21 March 2013 08:32

Vehicle Found In River


An SUV was found nose down in the Tuolumne River between 7th and 9th Streets this afternoon.

Emergency crews responded to the call which came in just after 2pm today. First responders determined no one was in the vehicle and it was later discovered that the vehicle was stolen.

A towing service was called to the scene to tow the vehicle out of the water.

Published in Traffic
Thursday, 07 March 2013 06:09

Deceased Body Identified

A body discovered last Thursday has been identified by authorities, and the case has been deemed a homicide.

Police say the body of 21 year old Daniel Joseph Montgomery Allen had been in the river for an extended period of time before being discovered, perhaps even weeks. Family members reported him missing in December.

Authorities did not provide any information regarding the circumstances of his death. Officials continue to investigate.

Published in Modesto Crime
Monday, 03 September 2012 02:39

Rafters Rescued From Merced River

Snelling - September 2, 2012 six rafters put in at Henderson Park at 3:30 pm. After traveling an unknown distance, they were able to call 911 with a cell phone they took with them. Members of the Merced Sheriff’s Aviation Unit and Dive/Rescue and patrol responded to look for them.

After a short time the Air Unit’s Robinson Helicopter located the inflatable rafts tied up on the river. Five Divers responded to the location guided in by the helicopter and were able to locate the rafters. They were able to negotiate the thick vegetation and walk the victims out. They suffered minor injuries including a twisted ankle and dehydration but were otherwise in good condition.

The rafters ranged in ages from 13 to late teens. The rafts they attempted to use were swimming pool inflatable rafts. All victims were returned home safely and the Merced Sheriff’s Office would like to remind people to avoid attempting to float down the Merced River as it is very treacherous and cold swift moving water that most people are unprepared for.

Published in Safety
Thursday, 17 May 2012 04:00

Fishing For Modesto Youth

Published in Life & Social
Tuesday, 01 May 2012 01:14

Teen Missing In River Near Grayson

Just before 5pm on Monday April 30th, rescue crews responded to the area of the Laird Slough for a report of a possible drowning. A group of teens were reportedly swimming in the river when one of them became distressed. One of the victim's friends attempted to pull him to safety but was unsuccessful. Another teen ran to a nearby fisherman and asked them to call 911. Rescue crews, including Sheriff Deputies and an air ambulance responded to the scene, but were unsuccessful in locating the victim, described only as a 17 year old male. The last known location of the victim, a pile of rocks near the river, was marked off by deputies for the dive team to begin their search in the morning.

Published in Breaking News

Sheriff’s Office Deputies assigned to the Crime Reduction Team, Rural Crime Detectives, and Officers from Fish and Game conducted a clean-up project along the Tuolumne River this morning. Trash thrown along the river bed and into the water had accumulated to the point that it looked like a land fill.

The Crime Reduction Team put together a project to help clean-up the trash and help protect our rivers. Approximately 10 inmates currently assigned to the Sheriff’s Office Alternative Work Program were used to clean the trash and filled a large Bertolotti trash container with the garbage they picked up.

Inmates found grocery store carts, mattresses, trash and a syringe near the water during the clean-up. The Crime Reduction Team asked for the community to help report illegal dumping to avoid contamination of our rivers and the dumping of trash.

Anyone with information about illegal dumping can contact the Sheriff’s Office at 209-525-7114 or Non-Emergency Dispatch at 209-552-2468. Callers can also leave an anonymous tip by calling Crime Stoppers at (209) 521-4636. Tipsters can also e-mail tips at, or text them to CRIMES (274637) by typing "Tip704" plus the message and be eligible for a cash reward

Photos From Stanislaus Sheriff's Department:

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Published in Life & Social