Authorities claim that two EMS personnel from Sangamon County, Illinois, improperly strapped a patient across his back and placed him face down on a stretcher to transport him to the hospital. They are now being charged with first-degree murder.
Peggy Finley, 44, and Peter Cadigan, 50, both LifeStar Ambulance Service staff, are charged with murder in the death of 35-year-old Earl Moore Jr., who was declared dead upon arrival at the hospital on December 18, 2022. “Compressional and positional asphyxia owing to prone face-down restraint on a paramedic transportation cot/stretcher by tightened straps across the back,” was the cause of death, according to the postmortem report. The death has been classified as a homicide as a result.
What Happened Really In This Incident?
A police video of the incident from the Sangamon County Government channel seems to show that police were initially called to the home, even though no information about Moore’s health before the ambulance was called was provided in the press conference by local authorities other than the statement that EMS was called for “medical distress” at his home. Around 2 AM, police arrived at the residence.
When a lady knocks on the door, she says the man inside is “hallucinating” as a result of “drunk hallucinations” and experiencing alcohol withdrawal after going four days without consuming any alcohol. She informs the policeman that the man dialed 911 on his own for “no reason,” and continues by saying that she believes he needs assistance because he is “hearing voices in his brain” and “seeing things that aren’t there.”
The man she described as Earl is laying on the bed when the police arrive, and at first is unable to properly address them, instead repeatedly reciting his address. One of the officers explains that he needs to get him checked out by an ambulance, therefore he wants to contact one. The officer responds kindly, “Looks like you’re experiencing some kind of trouble.” “Have you been trying to cut back on alcohol a little bit? It’s hard to stop doing that cold turkey, man. That’s messing you up right now.
Earl can sit up and ask the officers for water despite his obvious distress. Additionally, the officer observes that the man is “sweating up a storm.” Earl was on the floor when EMS arrived, and he moves off the bed after a few minutes.
The female EMS worker yells at Earl to sit up as soon as she gets there. “Stop acting so foolish. She continues, “I’m not going to play with you tonight. You will need to walk because we won’t be carrying you. I’m just not in the mood for this stupid stuff, she says.
Earl makes an attempt to exit the room, trips over once, and then receives help exiting from two of the officers. In a different area of the home, he passes out once more. It’s repeated by the female EMS worker, “You can walk, get up.” Despite multiple occasions where the officers physically assist Moore, the female EMS worker never once attempts to do so.
Earl is urged to stand up by the officers, who also assist him in making the final few steps from the door to the stretcher. One of the officers warns, “You can fall face first on that cot.” Once outside, the male EMS worker drags Earl down the rest of the stretcher so that he is face-down. An officer and the male worker assist Earl as he struggles to clamber onto the cot on his stomach.
As the authorities observe, the two employees fasten two straps around Earl’s lower and upper bodies before wheeling him to the ambulance.
A policeman says that he wants to make sure Earl gets into the ambulance. He giggles, “He’ll find a way to deadweight off that thing.
The second cop responds, “Oh they strapped him in good,” and they both laugh.
Unfortunately, investigators claim that Earl’s death while traveling to the hospital was directly caused by the way he was “strapped in good.” According to Fox8 News, Earl was pronounced dead shortly after getting to the hospital at 3:14 AM. Dan Wright, the state’s attorney for Sangamon County, said during a news conference that the EMS team should have been aware that placing a patient in distress face-down with straps across their back might have significantly increased the risk of serious injury or death.
Police Chief Ken Scarlette, according to NBC News, was the one to ask the Illinois State Police to conduct a separate investigation after learning of Moore’s passing. The personnel “did act without legitimate justification,” Wright continued, in how they held Moore and in applying “tightened restrictions” to him.
Officially charged with first-degree murder, Cadigan and Finley were each given a $1 million bond before being taken into custody at a nearby county jail. Each employee could spend up to 60 years in prison if found guilty. First-degree murder is widely understood to occur when “another person has been intentionally killed by someone who has acted willfully, deliberately, or with planning.”
There have been conflicting responses on social media, with some arguing that the police officers should have stepped in and prevented Moore from being placed face-down on the stretcher, while others supported the policemen as acting kindly and not being in charge of medical judgments.
Former and present paramedics joined the discussion and said that the EMS personnel made glaring and serious mistakes by neglecting to assess the patient and by choosing to transfer him while leaving him prone on the stretcher.
Some commenters who identified themselves as healthcare professionals even admitted that while they understand getting burned out at work and dealing with difficult patients, maintaining a patient’s airway is still a very basic job duty that should be something an EMS worker does without really even thinking about it, choosing by both workers to leave him face-down on a cot with straps very perplexing.
Neither the ambulance business nor the alleged EMS worker has stated as of the time of publication. Lifestar Ambulance Service informed PEOPLE that because the matter is still being investigated, they are unable to comment. Keep yourself updated with all the latest news from our website Newswatchlist.com and get all the recent updates.