Cops get props for high-wire rescue

Posted: March 21, 2014

WHEN OFFICERS Ned Felici and Richard Holland pulled up to a home in the Castor section of Northeast Philadelphia one morning last August, they had no choice but to spring into action.

That's standard procedure when a 2-year-old boy is clinging to power lines three stories above the ground.

"We didn't really think; we just wanted to get him down," Felici, a 15-year veteran of the department, said yesterday after receiving a commendation for the rescue. "We didn't have time to wait for rescue or the fire department - we had to do it."

So, Felici and Holland scrambled to gain entry to the home, on Wells Street near Loretto Avenue. Ultimately, they had to kick their way through three locked doors and navigate past a pit bull before they could gain access to the boy, who was straddling the wires after falling from a nearby window.

"Richie held me by my belt, leaned me out the window, and I threw the kid to him in one motion," Felici recalled.

He said there was never any worry about his safety - Holland, a 13-year veteran of the department, has worked with Felici for most of their careers.

For their efforts, the two were given commendations by the department during a merit ceremony at the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge No. 5 on Caroline Road in Northeast Philadelphia.

"This is one of best examples of police work we could possibly have," said Capt. Frank Palumbo, who leads the 2nd Police District, where the two serve. "I hope the boy remembers this his whole life."

The high-wire rescue was a first for the duo, and they hope it's also their last.

"But if another one does come along, we're ready for it," Holland said.

On Twitter: @Vellastrations

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