SLC officer performing welfare check saves man who suffered from heart attack

Posted at 9:33 PM, Aug 29, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-29 23:43:02-04

SALT LAKE CITY -- It started with a welfare check, but ended with Salt Lake City Police saving a 63-year-old man’s life after suffering a heart attack.

Over the weekend, police went to James Bell’s home at the request of his daughter who lives in Detroit, Mich.

“Something didn't feel right and we were really worried,” said James Bell’s daughter London in a Sykpe interview Monday.

James Bell hadn't been heard from in a few days and he wasn't answering his phone.

With a feeling she and her sister, who also lives in Detroit, couldn’t shake, London Bell decided to call the police and ask them to do a welfare check.

On Saturday afternoon, an officer knocked on James Bell's apartment door on Main Street, but there was no answer.

London Bell had told police her father suffered from heart problems. Knowing this, the officer on scene took things a step further.

With the door locked and no one responding to the door, Det. Lougy with Salt Lake City police, said the officer took the extra step to contact the property manager to force the door open.

When the door swung open police saw two feet extended from a bedroom doorway. They found James Bell alone in his apartment lying on the floor.

He was suffering a heart attack.

“I can't even imagine,” London Bell said. “I know he was scared and in pain and we couldn't be there.”

First responders took James Bell to the University of Utah Hospital where he is receiving medical attention.

“Perfect timing for this officer to arrive when he did -- probably saved the guy’s life,” Lougy said.

London Bell agreed.

“Anything could have happened Saturday,” she said. “We could have lost him and that would have been devastating for us.”