Topeka police officer Aaron Bulmer was responding to a robbery call when he drove past a park and saw a lonely toddler there all by himself.
Investigating the scene
Though he was busy, something about this scene upset Officer Bulmer, and he felt the need to drive around the park to see if he could figure out why this boy was alone.
"I just felt like God was telling me you need to get around the block and go find out where that little boy is going," Bulmer told CNN.
After another moment, the little boy disappeared from view. Immediately, Bulmer switched on his body camera and jumped out of his car to investigate.
What was caught on camera?
Before Bulmer could get to him, the little boy had slipped into a pond and was drowning.
"He was struggling," Bulmer said. "I saw a left hand go up in the air and then I saw his face in the water and I could see that he was just gasping for air. And, you know, it scared me. It scared me as a parent. It scared me just as a person, a human being."
Bulmer's body camera filmed the entire, terrifying scene.
"Got a kid that fell into the pond," Bulmer said into his radio. In the video, we can see how the officer is aided by another park goer who helped the boy out of the pond.
Police said the little boy was brought to a nearby hospital to be evaluated and was then reunited with his father, who had been frantically looking for his son when the incident occurred.
A worried father
Authorities later found out that the little boy, Elijah Hamby, has autism.
"Many times, children with autism are drawn to water, as was displayed in this case," Bulmer's police department told ABC News. "Officer Bulmer was in the right place at the right time to save a young life."
While Elijah's mother was at work and his four other siblings were at church, father Jacob Hamby was at home with his son. Jacob made sure to lock all the doors and kept Elijah occupied with chocolate milk and his favorite TV show while he briefly stepped out of the room to use the restroom.
What Jacob didn't know, however, was that Elijah knew how to unlock a deadbolt. Elijah quietly slipped out of the house and wandered to the park. When Jacob came out of the bathroom, he saw the back door wide open,CNN reports.
Panicking, Jacob ran around the neighborhood asking neighbors for help. He even called his wife and asked her to come home to help.
"He was in tears, hollering his name around the neighborhood," said Jaclyn Hamby, Jacob's wife. "Neighbors were starting to come out, starting to help him look."
Jaclyn said Elijah is now fine and still loves water. "I don't even think he recollects that he was in danger's way," she said.
Taking extra precautions
Jaclyn said that her husband, Jacob, is still traumatized about what happened, but luckily the family was able to buy a new set of locks for the doors with a chime that goes off every time a door opens. They are also looking into getting Elijah enrolled in swim classes.
Jaclyn said she hates to think about what might have happened if the heroic police officer weren't there to save her son.
"I fear that I would have lost a child that day."
Bulmer agreed, saying he could still picture the young boy's head face-down in the water.
"I'm grateful I was in the right place at the right time to rescue Elijah," Bulmer said, grateful he was able to save a life by following his gut.