There have been numerous rumors circulating throughout the Suffern community about a recent COVID-19 case and we feel that the best way to dispel rumors is with the truth as our department has prided itself consistently on our transparency.
So here are the facts:
On Thursday, March 12th at approximately 6:15 AM the Suffern Police Department received a call from a residence here in the village that a person who resided at this location was having difficulty breathing. Upon department protocols and after dispatching officers to this location the desk officer asked the caller a few questions to inquire as to the status of the person that was in distress. It was then learned that the aided person, a 64 yr. old male and long time village resident who had other current health issues, had displayed a fever and had flu like symptoms for several days prior to this incident. As officers arrived this information was relayed to them and following safety procedures they entered the residence wearing personal protective equipment including gloves and masks. Upon entering this residence the aided male was found to be unconscious wit no pulse and officers performed CPR and used a department AED in an attempt to revive him.
At that time the Rockland Paramedics and Ramapo Valley Ambulance Corps. arrived on scene and after extensive emergency medical care the aided was pronounced deceased on scene by medics. Due to the surrounding circumstances we contacted the Rockland County Medical Examiner’s Officer and the Rockland County Health Department who responded to the scene and tested the deceased for COVID-19.
Upon speaking to the county health department and after reviewing the surrounding circumstances the officers involved in the attempted life saving measures were placed on precautionary quarantine.
This was changed to mandatory quarantine after we were notified by county and state health officials that the decedent tested positive for COVID-19 (4 officers total are out on this quarantine).
This will be the only information that we are able to release due to HIPPA laws. The follow up investigation as to where the decedent had been prior, etc. is handled by the Rockland County Health Department solely.
We will also not be releasing the decedant’s address. However, we were advised that the health department is and will continue to notify known locations where all COVID-19 patients within Rockland County have been. This situation is a Rockland County Medical Examiner and Rockland County Health Department case and all inquiries should be directed to them. It should also be noted that all officers under quarantine are showing no symptoms and are doing well.
Thank you for the continued support.