Connor’s Law Will Require Defibrillators At All Anne Arundel Co. Public Pools

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Meghan McCorkell joined the Eyewitness News team in July 2011 as a...
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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ)—Keeping kids safe in the water. Emergency legislation is now on the table in Anne Arundel County to increase safety at public pools this summer.

Meghan McCorkell has more on the new proposal that could save lives.

It’s called Connor’s Law. If passed, it would require defibrillators at all public pools. And for one family, it’s a personal mission.

In 2006, 5-year old Connor John James Freed was found floating face down in a Crofton pool–right underneath an empty lifeguard chair.

“He came out. He threw up, and he was just laying there. Nobody knew what to do,” said his father Thomas Freed.

A lifeguard frantically called 911 but wasn’t allowed to use a defibrillator on the young boy because she wasn’t trained.

“It’s just mindboggling. I don’t understand why they had it and were not allowed to use it on him,” said Debbie Freed, Connor’s mother.

Now a new proposal could change all that.

Anne Arundel County Executive John Leopold is introducing Connor’s Law, which would require all public and semi-public pools to have defibrillators and people who know how to use them.

“The most important thing we can do in government is to save lives, and this is one way to do that,” Leopold said.

Since their son’s death, Thomas and Debbie Freed started The Connor Cares Foundation, promoting water safety. The foundation now donates portable defibrillators to public pools.

The County Council is set to vote on the law just days before what would have been Connor’s 12th birthday.

“If they pass it, that’s his birthday gift. That will be the best thing we can do to honor him and not let him die in vain,” Debbie Freed said.

It’s a mission they’ll keep fighting for in memory of their son.

The County Council will hold an emergency public hearing on Connor’s Law on July 2.

A similar law was attempted at the state level but it was voted down.

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