Valley officer called a hero after saving family of 12 from fire

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PHOENIX -- A Valley police officer is being hailed as a hero after an early morning fire tore through a Valley house, leaving a family of 12 homeless.

Fire started in attic

It happened at about 2 a.m. near 27th Street and Indian School Road.

A police officer on patrol spotted the fire.

She and a neighbor rushed to the home and pounded on the doors and windows of the burning home.

The family -- three adults and nine children -- was asleep as the house quickly filled with smoke.

The officer, Aimee Knight-Fogel, and the neighbor managed to wake the sleeping family and hustle them outside to safety. Thanks to them, everybody made it out in time. Nobody was hurt.

Knight-Fogel called the fire department and more officers from her unit. Together, those officers helped eveacuate both the burning home and a neighboring house.

At one point, the family believed one person was missing and possibly still inside, but it was later determined that he was not home.

Knight-Fogel said she didn't realize how bad it was until the front door opened and she saw all the smoke coming from the vents.

"I'm glad that I was here and could get them out," Knight-Fogel said. "Right place, right time."

Crews said there is quite a bit of damage to the home.

Phoenix fire officials are calling the fire accidental, saying it started somewhere in the attic.

The Red Cross has stepped in to help the family.