Phoenix police officer rescues Hawaii swimmer in distress

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Phoenix police Officer Guillermo Arrubla By Jennifer Thomas Phoenix police Officer Guillermo Arrubla By Jennifer Thomas
Phoenix police Officer Guillermo Arrubla received an Award of Valor from the City and County of Honolulu Ocean Safety Division: Lt. Rod Alderton, Rescue Watercraft Operator Billy Goodwin, Harold Teshima, Victor Hemmy and Lt. J.R. Sloan. By Jennifer Thomas Phoenix police Officer Guillermo Arrubla received an Award of Valor from the City and County of Honolulu Ocean Safety Division: Lt. Rod Alderton, Rescue Watercraft Operator Billy Goodwin, Harold Teshima, Victor Hemmy and Lt. J.R. Sloan. By Jennifer Thomas
Spitting Cave By Jennifer Thomas Spitting Cave By Jennifer Thomas
Spitting Cave By Jennifer Thomas Spitting Cave By Jennifer Thomas

HONOLULU (AP) -- An off-duty Phoenix police officer saved the life of a swimmer in Hawaii.

Guillermo Arrubla on Saturday watched a woman jump off a cliff at Spitting Caves and then struggle to return to shore.

Arrubla entered the water with two life vests and helped the woman put one on. He stayed with her until a boat from the Honolulu Ocean Safety Division reached them.

Arrubla was a lifeguard on Long Island, N.Y., and a former New York police officer until he joined the Phoenix Police Department almost 15 years ago.

He tells the Honolulu Star-Advertiser that the turbulent water below Spitting Caves made him decide not to jump in until he saw the woman in distress.

The Ocean Safety Division presented Arrubla with a merit award Sunday.

Information from: Honolulu Star-Advertiser