Hillsborough County
Chad Chronister, Sheriff
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    Release Number: 17-566

    • For Immediate Release:
    • Public Information Office of Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office
    • October 11, 2017
    • Contact Person:
    • Public Information Office : piocommandcenter@hcso.tampa.fl.us
    • 813-247-8060

    Deputy Jumps Into Pond To Save Autistic Child

    Thanks to Deputy Taveras' quick action, Zachary is safe.
    • Tuesday
    • October 10, 2017
    • Time: 4:31 PM
    • Apollo Beach Boulevard & Dickman Drive


    Zachary Durante
    DOB: 10/13/07
    349 Apollo Beach Boulevard
    Apollo Beach, FL



    Deputy Efrain Taveras
    52 years of age / 12-year veteran
    District IV


    On October 10, 2017 at 4:31 p.m., deputies responded to the area of Apollo Beach Blvd. and Dickman Drive in reference to a missing/endangered autisticchild. Zachary Durante, 9 years old, had walked away from home through an unlocked front door.  Deputies were circulating the area and a Safety Net page had been initiated, when Zachary, who does not know how to swim, was observed by Deputy Taveras in a retention pond nearby. Deputy Taveras immediately jumped into the pond, in full uniform, and pulled the child to safety. Thanks to Deputy Taveras' quick action, Zachary is safe and has been reunited with his family.


  • Sheriff Chad Chronister
    Sheriff Chad Chronister
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