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Riverhead cop, medic saves choking infant, police say

The Pine Tree Day Nursery on Roanoke Avenue

The Pine Tree Day Nursery on Roanoke Avenue in Riverhead. Credit: Google Maps

A quick-acting police sergeant and town paramedic worked together early Monday morning to remove a 2-inch Lego piece from the airway of an infant at day care, Riverhead Town police.

Sgt. Jill Kubetz arrived at the Pine Tree Day Nursery on Roanoke Avenue, "within a minute" of an 8:49 a.m. 911 call to dispatchers alerting officers of the choking infant at the day care center, police said in a statement.

"Sgt. Kubetz retrieved the infant from staff and found the infant to have a full airway obstruction," police said. "Sgt. Kubetz immediately performed airway obstruction procedures for the infant, giving the infant back thrusts which did dislodge the object from the lower airway … [and] noted what appeared to be a large Lego lodged and blocking the infant’s airway. "

Those efforts helped the object move enough that the child began to get "limited airflow," police said. Officials, however, said the child remained in danger, and sought more medical assistance.

"Riverhead Town Ambulance responded. Sgt. Kubetz held the infant while Riverhead Ambulance Paramedic, Christine Klassert, was able to remove a 2" Lego piece from the infant’s throat," police said.

The infant was evaluated at Stony Brook University Hospital, police said.

After the baby was released, the father and baby came to the department "to express their gratitude to the Officers and Ambulance responders for their actions this morning," police said.

Police did not immediately provide more information Monday afternoon, including the gender and age of the infant, and whether police are investigating the incident.

A woman who picked up the phone at the day care center Monday afternoon declined to comment.

Pine Tree Day Nursery, advertised on its Facebook page that it is a private child care center for children from 6 weeks to 12-years-old.

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