Metropolitan Nashville Police Officer Eric Mumaw was killed during a dramatic rescue on the Cumberland River on the morning of February 2. He saved a suicidal woman, identified as Juli Glisson, from drowning. Glisson is now at the center of a criminal investigation.
The 44-year-old Mumaw was remembered by his colleagues for his service to the community.
“I know he died doing what he loves. He loved his midnight shift and he gave his life,” Metro Police Chief Steve Anderson said Thursday morning, reports WLTX. “I know his whole detail is over there. They’re grieving. They’re going to miss him.”
Here’s a look at the dramatic rescue.
1. Police Say Glisson Was Contemplating Suicide When Mumaw & Officer Nick Diamond Tried to Talk Her Out of It
Authorities told News Channel 5 that they received a report of a 40-year-old woman contemplating suicide at the end of a boat ramp at Peeler Park. Mumaw and a fellow officer, Nick Diamond, spoke with her and tried to get her out of her car.
While the two officers tried to get her out of the car, the car went into gear and fell into the river. Since it was still dark, the two officers couldn’t see where the ramp ended. Mumaw jumped into the cold water to save her, pulling her from the car before it became completely submerged, reports the Tennessean.
Mumaw’s body was later recovered 50 to 60 yards from the boat ramp. Diamond survived, and was taken to Vanderbilt University Medical Center.
2. Glisson Has a Criminal Record & Is Under Criminal Investigation
Police announced on Twitter that the 40-year-old Glisson is now under “criminal investigation” and is being evaluated at a hospital.
“We will have officers dealing with her this morning and it would be premature for me to say specifically what will happen to her later today,” police spokesman Don Aaron told the Tennessean early Thursday. “The initial report from officers at Skyline is that she shows signs of impairment. She is being detained and is very much under criminal investigation by this police department.”
The Tennessean notes that Glisson does have a criminal record. Since 2002, she has faced charges of driving with a suspended license, driving under the influence, drug possession, theft and vandalism, public intoxication, assault and drug paraphernalia. She spent several months in jail after pleading guilty to at least three arrests.
3. Mumaw Received Several Awards During his 18 Years of Service
The above Twitter photo shows Mumaw receiving the Lifesaving Award in April 2011. In 2003, he also received the Exemplary Service Award. In his 18 years of service, Mumaw was known for going above and beyond to save lives.
In her statement on Mumaw’s death, Nashville Mayor Megan Barry said:
“Our worst fears were realized today when Officer Mumaw was recovered deceased from the Cumberland River after having given his life to save a woman in distress. Officer Mumaw dedicated his life to the safety and protection of us all, and today he gave his life to that calling. My thoughts and prayers are with Officer Mumaw’s family and friends and all of our Metro Nashville Police Officers today.
“I want to thank the men and women of our Metro Nashville Police Department and Nashville Fire Department, as well as the city of Hendersonville, Tennessee Highway Patrol, Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency, and Army Corps of Engineers who all came together this morning to assist in the search for Officer Mumaw.”
4. In 2007, Mumaw Saved a Baby in a Stolen SUV
This isn’t the first dramatic rescue Mumaw has been involved in. As WTLX notes, in 2007, he saved a baby who was inside a stolen SUV.
While at a gas station, he saw an SUV speed away. A man told him that the vehicle was stolen and that his baby was inside. Mumaw followed the car until it drove off the road and saved the baby.
In 2007, Mumaw was among the officers who received a Department Commendation for his service.
“Eric was one of those guys that I always liked to see because we always traded insults with each other in a friendly way,” Police Chief Steve Anderson told the Tennessean. “That’s the way he was with everyone. So I know his whole detail is over there, they’re grieving and they’re going to miss him.”
5. Another Officer Described Mumaw as a ‘Good Friend & Good Officer’ Dedicated to His Job
Sgt. Robert Weaver, who graduated with Mumaw 18 years ago, told ABC6 that Mumaw was a “good friend and a good officer…dedicated to his job and loved this city that he adopted.”
Weaver added that Mumaw “was always smiling and joking…those of us that knew him, knew him well…we have a huge hole in our hearts today.”
Mumaw was born and raised in Ohio and loved the Ohio State Buckeyes before he moved to Tennessee. According to ABC6, police are still trying to make contact with his mother. He was not married and didn’t have children.