Two Illinois paramedics were charged with murder after one of their patients died of positional suffocation after being transported to a hospital last month.
Defendant emergency workers, Peggy Finley, 44, and Peter Cadigan, 50, went to a home in the state capital Springfield on December 18 after police sought medical attention when a person was “having hallucinations due to alcohol withdrawal.” The Springfield Police Department said in a press release.
Police released body-cam footage of Finley entering a bedroom at the back of the house and an officer telling him about the patient, Earl Moore Jr., CNN reported.
Ms Finley can then be heard yelling at Mr Moore, 35, to get up and walk to the ambulance.
“You’ll have to walk because we’re not carrying you!” it says in the image. “I’m seriously not in the mood for this stupid f*ck.”
Two police officers can then be seen helping the patient get out and onto the ambulance stretcher. Mr. Cadigan then replaces Mr. Moore and two paramedics tie him up in a prone position.
“The Springfield Police Department was later informed that the patient died after arriving at the hospital,” the department said.
An autopsy report states that Mr. Moore died of “impairment and positional asphyxia due to prone restraint in a paramedic transport cot/stretcher with straps stretched across the back and lower body in a setting of drowsiness and underlying chronic alcoholism”.
The paramedics were arrested on January 9 and are charged with first-degree murder, according to court documents.
The bail amount for each is set at $1 million and they are held at the Sangamon County Detention Facility. They will appear in court next January 19.
Lawyer Peter Wise represented the paramedics at Tuesday’s bail hearing. Told Washington post That Mrs Finley and Mr Cadigan have no criminal record and are not a danger to others.
“These are two good people who find themselves in a very strange criminal case,” Wise told the newspaper.
The Sangamon County prosecutor announced the murder charges after the coroner reported the cause of death as murder.
State Attorney General Dan Wright said Tuesday that paramedics were aware that tying Moore down in a prone position would create “a significant possibility of bodily injury or death.”
When the police arrived at Mr. Moore’s home, a woman opened the door and said that he was an alcoholic and had not had a drink in four days. He added that he was hallucinating, but not severely.
Officers sought medical attention after trying to talk to Mr. Moore, who was lying in bed, for about 30 seconds. Mr. Moore rolled out of bed before paramedics arrived. Mail.
“This is Earl,” one of the officers said to Miss Finley. “I didn’t learn much from him.”
“Earl, sit down. Sit down!” He yelled when he didn’t answer his questions.
The head of the NAACP chapter in Springfield said Illinois Times It was “almost worse” than the death of George Floyd, who was killed by police in Minneapolis, Minnesota in May 2020, sparking nationwide racist justice protests.
Ms. Haley told the newspaper, “If this man is already… having trouble breathing, and then you put him face down on a stretcher, it would be hostile to see the video and how they were treating him.” “They literally threw their hands behind his back and tied him up. He couldn’t move even if he wanted to.”
Independent reached out to Mr. Wise for comment.