standing Westerly Police Department Cruiser

WESTERLY — Emergency personnel with the Westerly Ambulance Corps helped to rescue a woman who had passed out along Tower Street and then witnessed a fight that led to the arrest of two of the woman's neighbors.

Westerly police said an ambulance crew was driving along Tower Street just before 7 p.m. Tuesday while returning from a previous call when an EMT noticed an adult woman lying by the side of the road at 143 Tower St.

"The alert actions of these EMTs allowed them to recognize a problem and help someone in need, even without an emergency call," said Westerly Police Chief Shawn Lacey.

The woman, a neighborhood resident, had been "huffing paint," Lacey said, which caused her to pass out. She was treated at the scene and was taken to Westerly Hospital for further evaluation.

Before the crew could help the woman, however, Lacey said they called the police after witnessing a domestic dispute that had turned physical. The EMTs heard a man and a woman arguing on the roadside at 145 Tower St. The woman, Eliza L. Matteson, 26, punched the man, Donald B. Lewis, 39. He grabbed Matteson by the neck.

Officers arrived and Matteson and Lewis, of 145 Tower St., were charged with domestic simple assault or battery and domestic disorderly conduct.

"One call led to responses in three separate incidents," Lacey said. "It was a busy day for that crew and they deserve credit for the role they played in each of the responses."

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