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Police and fire

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Chad Ryan/The Journal Gazette
A Fort Wayne police officer looks into the water Friday at the scene of a near-drowning in the Westchester Lakes subdivision, off Scott Road near Covington Road. A man was pinned underwater in a retention pond by a riding lawnmower, conservation officers said.

Near-drowning reported in Allen County

A Fort Wayne man was critically injured Friday when he was pinned underwater by a riding lawnmower in a southwest Allen County retention pond, Indiana conservation officers said tonight.

Robert Houser Jr., 26, was in critical condition at a local hospital after the incident, which occurred shortly after noon, conservation officers said in a statement.

They said Houser, an employee of a landscaping company, was mowing grass in the Westchester Lakes subdivision near the edge of a retention pond when the mower slid down an embankment and into the water, pinning him.

Co-workers discovered Houser and were able to free him, call 911 and begin CPR on shore, the statement said. It was not known how long he was underwater.

Conservation officers were assisted by the Fort Wayne police and fire departments.

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