By Tony Lopez

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – It was a wild scene outside a burning Sacramento apartment complex Thursday as a child was dropped from a window to escape the flames.

Fire crews attacked the blaze quickly in the 3700 block of Merrily Way and put a stop to it as fast as they could; but before sirens went screaming toward the apartment complex, trapped residents were screaming for help.

“I almost passed out going up to the top of the stairs,” said Jaques King. I couldn’t breathe.”

He ran back down just as a young mother was about to drop her 9-year-old girl from a second story window.

“My skin was burning, like I could feel it. So we’re trying to rush her down, but you can’t rush somebody that’s scared,” said King.

“When she let her go, I had to catch her and she was crying,” said another neighbor. “When she touched the ground, when I caught her, she touched the ground and she ran off.”

The little girl was okay, but her mother was still trapped. So she had no choice but to jump.

“The woman then jumped herself out of the apartment, and she was transported to the hospital with some injuries,” said Michelle Eidman, Sacramento Metro Fire spokesperson.

The mother of the 9-year-old girl broke her ankle as she fell, but her daughter wasn’t hurt.

Neighbors weren’t done; another man was trapped in his upstairs apartment.

“I ran through the gate with my ladder and I put it out there for him,” neighbor Bob Correa said.

Correa took it all in stride.

“Well, that’s what a neighbor should do, especially in a situation like this. When people are in danger, you gotta do something,” he said.

That’s exactly what they did on a night they’ll never forget.

“It changed my life. I’m not gonna mess with fire ever,” said King.

The Red Cross is helping the families find another place to live.


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