11-Year-old, wheelchair bound found unresponsive in swimming pool

NILES, Mich. - A boy with multiple sclerosis was found unresponsive and not breathing in the swimming pool in his back yard.

Those close to the family identified the boy as Brenden Nelson, 11. Police have not confirmed his name citing his age and medical condition.

Lt. Greg Sanders told ABC 57 News that Nelson was confined to a wheelchair because of MS. He was not able to walk and had a difficult time standing on his own. Neighbors said they often saw him crawling around when he wasn't in his wheelchair.

Sanders would not confirm if Nelson's wheelchair was found near the pool or if he felt that he crawled there on his own.

Nelson was discovered before 5 p.m. in about 16 inches of water Tuesday evening. Investigators said they are still working on a time line of events in hopes of discovering how he got in the pool and how long he was there before he was discovered.

The press release issued by the Berrien County Sheriff's Office called the incident a, "medical emergency." It did not say if a criminal investigation was underway or if foul play has been ruled out.

Neighbors said that a forensic team was on the scene for at least five hours and had the house blocked off with crime tape.

The incident happened in the family's backyard at 2742 Paul Street in Niles. Sanders said that his mother and father were home at the time of the incident, he declined to confirm if other kids were inside the house.

Neighbors came running when they heard Nelson's mom screaming and acting hysterical. Witnesses said she was so upset that she was throwing up.

Angel Crispo lives behind the Nelson's home. Crispo came running over when he heard the screams. He said that he saw the child's father giving him CPR.

"I said to the father, I can do that, and he gave me the opportunity to give CPR." 

Crispo said he and his son gave Nelson CPR for at least 10 minutes before help arrived. He described his body as cold.

When asked he felt like a hero he said, "No, God is the hero, Jesus is the hero, I'm only an instrument to him that's it." 

As of Wednesday night Nelson was listed in critical condition at Memorial Hospital. Those close to the family told ABC 57 News that he is in the ICU and on a breathing machine.

The family declined our request for an interview, but someone did yell out to us on the scene, "It was just an accident, please leave us alone and just go away." 

We had Nelson's grandpa's phone number, we left a message, our phone call wasn't returned.

Investigators told ABC 57 News early Wednesday afternoon that an additional press release with more details would be released Wednesday night or Thursday morning, we are yet to get that release.

Stay with ABC 57 News for the latest details on this developing story.

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