“A very strange criminal case”: two paramedics charged with murder after rescuing a man in the United States

the essential
Two American paramedics are charged with murder in Illinois, United States, following an improper medical intervention that led to the death of a 35-year-old man victim of hallucinations.

They were called to the scene to come to his aid, they will have finally led to his death. Paramedics Peggy Finley, 44, and Peter Cadigan, 50, are charged with the murder of Earl Moore Jr. in Illinois, USA. They allegedly accidentally resulted in his death as a result of poor emergency response, reports the Washington Post.

The facts date back to December 18. Finley and Cadigan, two paramedics working for the private company LifeStar Ambulance Service, are called around 2 a.m. by police officers to help a man suffering from hallucinations following alcohol withdrawal. They arrive on the scene 15 minutes later.

“Positional Asphyxia”

On the spot, both note that the state of Earl Moore Jr., 35 years old, does not represent an immediate danger. However, the man wanders, groans and does not stand up. After dragging him for several meters, the paramedics decide to install him and then attach him to a stretcher. A few tens of minutes later, Earl Moore Jr. dies after suffocating.

Sangamon County District Attorney Dan Wright announced on Tuesday, January 10, that Finley and Cadigan have been charged with first-degree homicide (in France, the term assassination is used, editor’s note). The medical examiners have indeed determined that the death of Earl Moore Jr. was indeed due to the intervention of the two paramedics, the latter having tied him face down on the stretcher and having caused his death by “positional asphyxiation”.

Between 20 and 60 years in prison

Trained in lifesaving gestures, Finley and Cadigan should have known that their intervention “would create a substantial likelihood of serious bodily harm or death,” the prosecutor continued. Both now face between 20 and 60 years in prison if convicted. Peter Wise, their lawyer, for his part assured that they had no criminal history and that they represented “no danger to others”. “These are two good people who find themselves in a very strange criminal case,” he said.

Teresa Haley, president of the NAACP, an American civil rights organization, compared Moore’s death to that of George Floyd, this African-American who died of asphyxiation following an arrest by several police officers. “It was almost even worse, because the surveillance camera footage clearly shows Moore struggling to breathe,” she said.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.