Crime - Sacto 911

Placer sheriff’s deputy in coma after striking head during training

Deputy Austin Harper, third from left, last year with other recruits
Deputy Austin Harper, third from left, last year with other recruits Placer County Sheriff’s Office Facebook

A Placer County sheriff’s deputy is in a medically induced coma after striking his head on a beam during a training exercise.

Deputy Austin Harper was on duty helping with police dog training Wednesday when his head struck a steel support beam in a vacant commercial building, according to a post on the sheriff’s Facebook site.

He was knocked unconscious, then taken to a hospital where he underwent surgery to lessen brain swelling. According to the Monday post on Facebook, Harper, who was placed in a medically induced coma, was in critical but stable condition.

Harper has been with the Sheriff’s Office since December. He previously was a police officer in Truckee.

Harper is a veteran of the Marine Corps. Harper’s wife, also a police officer, is pregnant with the couple’s first child.

The road to recovery for Harper will be long and costly. A support fund has been established at the California Association of Highway Patrol credit union. Go to https://cahpcu.org/donation-to-deputy-austin-harper/ for more information.

Bill Lindelof: 916-321-1079, @Lindelofnews

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