July 5, 2005 – A Texas man, Dave Newman, was arrested after saving a swimmer caught in turbulent river currents. Emergency rescuers were already on the scene, and repeatedly told Dave to leave the area. His charge: interfering with public duties.
Abed Duamni decided to take a swim that day, but did not notice any signs warning of possible danger in the river.
“According to police, Newman smirked and seemed annoyed by officers’ requests. He stood in the water for about 15 seconds before swimming downstream.”
Yes, under the law, Dave was interfering. You can compare it to a police chase where someone might join in the chase to catch the evading suspects. THAT would be interfering. But I don’t think Dave did too much wrong. If I was close by and thought I had a good shot to save someone quicker than the professionals, I would not hesitate. And in all fairness, I don’t think you can get too mad at someone who tries.
On the other hand, Dave could have easily been swept up in the currents as Abed and put himself in danger. That would cause problems. I find it hard to make a judgment. I can see both sides. Hmmm.