Mesa officers speak about helping save people from last week's apartment fire

Posted: Updated:
Ofc. Jake Campbell and Ofc. Mike Mullen spoke about saving a woman from an apartment fire last week. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Ofc. Jake Campbell and Ofc. Mike Mullen spoke about saving a woman from an apartment fire last week. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
They said they were in the area when a neighbor came up to them and said the apartment was on fire and a woman was inside. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) They said they were in the area when a neighbor came up to them and said the apartment was on fire and a woman was inside. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
The woman was unconscious at the time she was taken out of the apartment. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) The woman was unconscious at the time she was taken out of the apartment. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
The apartment was destroyed and nearby units were damaged. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) The apartment was destroyed and nearby units were damaged. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Collette Butler (Source: Maricopa County Sheriff's Office) Collette Butler (Source: Maricopa County Sheriff's Office)
MESA, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

Two Mesa police officers spoke about how they ran into a burning apartment to save a suspected arsonist.

Ofc. Jake Campbell and Ofc. Mike Mullen held a news conference on Tuesday, where they recalled when they got to the apartment fire near Southern Avenue and Dobson Road.

[ORIGINAL STORY: 4 officers transported to hospital after apartment fire in Mesa]

They said they were in the area when a neighbor came up to them and said the apartment was on fire and a woman was inside.

"When we first got there we tried to kick in her door to put the fire out and when we realized there's no way to extinguish, we carried her off," Mullen said.

[RAW VIDEO: Police try to evacuate people from Mesa apartment fire]

The woman was unconscious at the time.

Mullen then said they called more police units to the scene and they helped evacuate the rest of the people in nearby apartments.

"There was [sic] a couple of residents who helped out a lot," Campbell said. 

The woman, later identified as 38-year-old Collette Butler, and four other officers were taken to the hospital for smoke inhalation. Three others were exposed to smoke inhalation but didn't need to go to the hospital.

[READ MORE: Mesa police make arrest in arson that sent 5 officers to the hospital]

None of the injuries were serious.

Police said Butler started the fire and faces one count of arson and eight counts of endangerment.

"It was an experience definitely to remember," Campbell said.

Court documents state that the fire caused major damage to at least four apartments and caused at least 10 families to be displaced. 

Click/tap here to download the free azfamily mobile app.

Copyright 2017 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.