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84th Precinct’s Cop of the Month honored for saving a life

March 18, 2015 By Rob Abruzzese Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Officer Cornelia Samuels (second from right) was honored with the first Cop of the Month award this year by the 84th Precinct Community Council for her life-saving efforts on Feb. 20. Also pictured (from left): Community Council President Leslie Lewis; Samuel’s partner, Trenett Epps; her nephew Marquese; and Capt. Sergio Centa. Eagle photo by Rob Abruzzese

The 84th Precinct Community Council named its first Cop of the Month of the year on Tuesday night. The Precinct had not recognized an officer as Cop of the Month since Detectives Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos died in the line of duty late last year, but decided Officer Cornelia Samuels — who helped save a woman’s life on Feb. 20 — was a deserving recipient of this year’s first award.

Officer Samuels responded to a call last month for a cardiac arrest of a 48-year-old woman living in an apartment on Warren Street in Boerum Hill. When she arrived, she spotted the woman on the floor, quickly noticed that she wasn’t breathing and began to administer CPR.

Samuels continued with chest compressions for approximately seven minutes until EMS finally arrived and took over life-saving procedures. The woman eventually started breathing again and was taken to The Brooklyn Hospital Center, where she made a full recovery.

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“This is the first Cop of the Month that we’ve done this year, and we really wanted to show off the good our officers do,” 84th Precinct Capt. Sergio Centa said. “Yeah, as cops we fight crime and get the bad guys, but we also save lives, and this was another example of it.”

“The NYPD is largely a human services agency,” said Community Council President Leslie Lewis. “Every day they are out there helping people, and what police officer Samuels did was truly amazing. We are so proud of her and proud of the work she has done to save a life. I hope that she’s proud of herself as well.”

Samuels, who is originally from Brooklyn, has served with the NYPD for 11 years now and has been with the 84th Precinct for seven years. She said being a cop is often a thankless job, and it nearly brought her to tears to hear the praises coming from Lewis and her captain.

“You don’t have time to be scared in moments like that,” Samuels said. “We go in for CPR re-training every six months, and I’m glad that I paid close attention during those courses.”

Samuels was in the same squad as Detectives Liu and Ramos, so the past few months have been especially hard on her. She said that it’s times like these where it all seems worth it.

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“We’ve been through a lot, but we learn to keep going,” Samuels said. “Capt. Centa has been great at helping us through everything. He gives me motivation to do this job, and, despite everything, I took this job to help people, so I’m glad that I got that chance.”


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