Texas man arrested after rescuing drowning swimmer

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Saturday, July 16, 2005

San Marcos resident, Dave Newman, was swimming in the San Marcos river on the July 4th holiday weekend when he noticed that another man who had jumped into the river had failed to surface. Police arrived on the scene as Mr Newman attempted to rescue the man, Abed Duamni, a 35 year old from Houston. The officers instructed Mr Newman to swim to the nearest shore and get out of the water but he instead swam to the far shore with Mr Duamni. Upon his emergence from the river, Texas State University police arrested Mr Newman for interfering with public duties. Now free on $2000 bail Mr. Newman is set to appear in court next month.


Texas State University Police have dropped charges against Dave Newman after his arrest July 3 for interference with public duties at an emergency water rescue scene at Spring Lake Dam on the San Marcos River.

University President Denise Trauth and San Marcos Mayor Susan Narvaiz released the following joint statement:

"Mr. Newman was arrested because of his refusal to comply first with pleas, then requests, and then orders to leave the river after his rescue of Mr. Duamni. However, Mr. Newman did perform a heroic act, and we believe the proper course of action is to drop the charges. We want to emphasize to the public that the area around the Spring Lake Dam can be dangerous. It claimed the life of a young man as recently as last April and it has been the site of six emergency water rescues since that time. We cannot overstate the importance of heeding the many warning signs posted in the area and using extreme caution when swimming there. We also want to re-emphasize to the public the importance of following the directives of police and fire and rescue personnel when they are on the scene of an emergency. We are forming a university-community committee immediately to explore steps we can take to make this swimming area safer for the public."