Rescue of choking juror caught on camera - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Rescue of choking juror caught on camera

(WMC-TV) - A quiet lunch break turned into a near-death experience for a Tipton County juror when he began choking on a piece of cornbread.  A sheriff's lieutenant jumped in to help -- and it was all caught on camera.

Grand jurors were taking their lunch break, eating inside the Tipton County Jail multipurpose room.

Video from inside the jail shows everything was going as planned until a juror began choking.

"Yeah, I took a bite of cornbread and I noticed when I took it, it didn't go down right and I kept sitting there trying to get it to go down," said juror Jeff Hanks.

As Hanks stood up, he put his hands around his neck to indicate to others that he could not breathe.

That is when Tipton County Sheriff's Office Lieutenant John Weatherly started performing the Heimlich maneuver.

"Looked up and he was giving the international sign of distress and I went in reaction mode and grabbed him up," explained Lt. John Weatherly.

Jeff Hanks claims Lt. Weatherly saved his life. He said the deputy knew exactly what to do and did not even have to think about it.

"When he done the Heimlich on me, he lifted me off the ground and as soon as he did, the cornbread came out," Hanks said.

On Wednesday, the two saw each other for the first time since the choking incident.

Hanks and others from the jail wanted to publicly thank the lieutenant for his efforts.

"He saved the man's life. He did it in seconds. He was able to identify, address, and correct the problem," said Tipton County Sheriff's Office Chief Billy Daugherty.

All jailers are trained on life saving techniques, but, luckily, they rarely have to use them. 

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