Austin police officers rescue three people, dog from vehicle caught in rushing water

Three Austin police officers are being commended for their bravery in rescuing three people and a dog stuck in a car caught in rushing water in southwest Austin Friday evening.

Officers responded to a report of someone hearing a woman crying in the 6700 block of Old Bee Caves Road. Upon arrival, officers found a car caught in rushing water on a low water crossing bridge.

Officer Matthew Valli put on a life preserver and tied a rope to it and Officers Kevin Perrydore and Benjamin Cochran held the other end of the rope as Valli entered the rushing water and approached the car as it got closer to going over the side.

The three officers got two women out of the car and were removing a third and their dog when the car continued to move towards the edge. Valli was able to get them from the car but all three began to be pulled under due to the strong current.

Cochran entered the water and grabbed hold of Valli as he held onto the woman and dog. All were almost to safety when the current pulled the dog and woman back out into the water and almost over the edge of the bridge. Cochran and Valli worked together to hold on as Perrydore assisted in pulling them all out of harm's way.

A minute later, the car went over the side of the bridge.

"I'm just extremely estatic and happy that everyone came out of this alive," said APD South Patrol Bureau assistant chief Richard Guajardo during a press conference on the incident Tuesday. "The officers performed their jobs the way they were trained, heroically, and everything came out with the best possible outcome we could have hoped for."