Brothers who fell in pool still critical

June 17, 2009 3:12:26 PM PDT
Two young boys - ages 2 and 5 - remain in critical condition Wednesday after they fell into the family's pool on Long Island. They were pulled out by their three brothers, who started doing CPR while waiting for help to arrive.

Now, there are three investigations going on. First, there is the police investigation to see if anyone will be charged. Second, Child Protective Services is investigating endangerment and neglect. And third, the town is looking into code violations.

All of this is happening while the family focuses on the two boys, who remain hospitalized at Stony Brook University Medical Center.

Police say it took just a few minutes for the younger brothers to get out of the house and into the swimming pool. Investigators say their father made a quick trip to the gas station while their 12-year-old and 11-year-old twin boys were in charge.

Detectives say the 12-year-old spotted the pair floating face down in the family's backyard pool on Peach Tree Lane, around 5:30 Tuesday evening.

He performed CPR while his brother called 911.

"The pool apparently had been in disrepair, virtually empty at the shallow end," Detective Lieutenant Gregory McVeigh said. "About 4 to 5 feet of water at the deep end."

When paramedics arrived, 5-year-old Emmanual Paul was breathing. Two-year-old Jeffrey had a heartbeat, but was not breathing.

"They looked like they were dead," neighbor James Stenson said. "I thought they were dead."

Paramedics rushed the boys to St. Charles Hospital, then moved them to Stony Brook University Medical Center.

Police say there's a broken chain-link fence that the family recently replaced with a temporary fence. Part of that temporary fence apparently fell, which is something police are looking in to.

The family put out a statement, saying "We thank everyone for their thoughts and prayers during this difficult time. The boys are in the care of experts at Stony Brook, and we now ask for privacy while we focus all our energy on helping Emmanuel and Jeffrey recover."

The question on many parents minds now is, what can you do to keep your kids safe?

Dolphin Pool Supply owner Rich Brady has some tips.

"We do sell pool alarms, which are required by New York state law," he said.

Parents are also using floaty suits, life vests and teaching their kids to swim with lessons.

But Rich says that even with all the safety tools in the world, nothing replaces supervision.

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WEB PRODUCED BY: Bill King


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