Lake County jail employees credited with saving inmate's life

  • Two Lake County jail officers saved the life of a 28-year-old inmate who attempted to harm himself on Monday.

    Two Lake County jail officers saved the life of a 28-year-old inmate who attempted to harm himself on Monday. Courtesy Lake County sheriff

  • Matt Bellavia

    Matt Bellavia

  • Garrett Parsell

    Garrett Parsell

 
 
Updated 8/12/2021 8:10 PM

Two Lake County correctional officers are being credited with saving the life of an inmate who tried to throw himself from the upper mezzanine of the jail on Monday, authorities said in a news release Thursday.

Officers Garrett Parsell and Matthew Bellavia were escorting an inmate from a recreation area back to the inmate's cell when the man abruptly grabbed and vaulted the mezzanine railing, according to surveillance footage released by the Lake County sheriff's office.

 

Parsell grabbed the man and held him as he was dangling over the railing. Then Bellavia helped bring the inmate up and over to safety.

Sheriff John D. Idleburg said the officers undoubtedly saved the inmate's life.

"They, along with their correctional staff colleagues, consistently go above and beyond to keep our inmates safe," Idleburg said in a statement. "I am incredibly proud of our correctional employees and the hard work they put in each and every day."

Sheriff's Lt. Christopher Covelli said in the release that the inmate was uninjured and is now under self-harm protocols.

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