LAPORTE | A LaPorte woman trapped inside her burning home Sunday night was rescued by several police officers.
Quick work by the officers potentially saved the life of the 62-year-old woman, who did manage to get her two dogs to safety.
“She was beginning to suffer pretty heavily from smoke inhalation,” LaPorte Fire Chief Andy Snyder said.
Just before midnight, police were first to arrive at the home in the 1100 block of Pennsylvania Avenue after receiving a call from Laurie Elshout, who reported she was trapped inside the burning three-bedroom ranch style home.
Andy Snyder said she was in bed watching TV when she smelled smoke and opened her bedroom door to find the hallway engulfed in flames.
“There were flames impeding her exit through the bedroom doorway,” Snyder said.
Elshout was able to open her bedroom window just halfway because it was jammed but managed to slip her two dogs through the opening.
With heavy smoke pouring from the residence, Officer Billy Degnegaard arrived and heard the woman yelling from her window.
He tried opening the window but wasn't able to.
Officers Paul Brettin, Joshua Sponaugle and Victor Splix soon arrived and after the glass was busted assisted Elshout out of the opening.
Snyder said she was kept overnight at the hospital with smoke inhalation and a cut on her hand suffered from the flying shards of glass when the window was broken.
He said damage was at least $50,000 to the structure which likely can be repaired.
The cause was still being investigated but Snyder said indications are it started close to a laundry room area.
“There's a couple of appliances in that area. We're not sure if they had anything to do with it or not,” Snyder said.