CHICAGO (CBS) — A Boone County sheriff’s deputy’s split-second decision saved the lives of four people, including his own, when a passing car nearly ran them over Saturday night.
Deputy Charles Schutz and two other deputies were conducting a DUI stop around 11:30 p.m. Saturday along Illinois Route 173 in Boone County, about 65 miles northwest of Chicago, when another suspected drunk driver almost hit all four of them.
Schutz spotted the oncoming car, and quickly pushed his colleagues and the driver they had stopped out of the way just seconds before the car sped past them, coming within inches of where Schutz had been standing.
The incident was recorded on dashcam video.
Schutz was able to joke about the incident afterward.
“I tell people i was trying to get myself out of the way, They just happened to be in my way when I ran,” he said.
The deputy said he thought the passing car was going to hit one of the stopped police cruisers.
“You have to keep your head on a swivel. You’re looking out for everybody,” he said.
After the car passes, the video shows Schutz running to his squad car. He said he was able to catch up with the driver who nearly hit him, and arrest him for driving under the influence.
“I appreciate everybody’s response, but at the end of the day I’m just happy everybody goes home,” Schutz said.
The Boone County Sheriff’s office said drivers get too close to deputies too often, and reminded drivers about “Scott’s Law,” which requires motorists to slow down and change lanes if possible when passing a police car or other vehicle that has flashing emergency lights activated.
The law is named after Chicago Fire Department Lt. Scott Gillen, who was struck and killed in December 2000, when a drunk driver sped past an accident scene. The law was updated last year to include all vehicles using emergency lights, including tow trucks, other commercial vehicles, and passenger cars.