Desperate dad jumped into rolling river in attempt to save daughter: report

Authorities and family are still searching on Monday for a 5-year-old girl who fell into the Stanislaus River in Northern California on Sunday afternoon and it was revealed that her father jumped in to try to save her.

The girl was identified in reports as Matilda Ortiz. She slipped off some rocks and fell into the river at Knights Ferry, the Stanislaus County Sheriff's Department said.

"I jumped in there. I jumped in there right after her, and I couldn't get her. I tried my hardest. I tried," said Roberto Ortiz, the girl's father who struggled in the water until others rescued him, officials said, according to the station.

The girl is autistic, the Modesto Bee reported.

"I just want to ask anybody that’s a parent that could imagine what I’m going through just to please help. Please help me find my child," her father Roberto also told Fox 40 Sacramento.

The sheriff’s department is using several drones to help in the search, the report said.


The current river flow is about 4,200 cubic feet per second in the area where the girl was swept away, the Bee reported, citing California's Department of Water Resources.