Another day, another instance of white public servants allegedly treating Black bodies like they’re disposable nuisances rather than humans in need of care. This time, it wasn’t the police who appeared to show callousness and indifference toward the mattering of Black lives, it was two paramedics who are now charged with their patient’s murder.
According to KWTX 10, two Springfield, Illinois, EMT workers, Peter Cadigan and Peggy Finley, have been arrested and charged with first-degree murder in the death of 35-year-old Earl L. Moore, who died while in their care last month.
Police body-camera footage shows Moore sweating profusely before rolling off the bed onto the floor. Moore’s family members had reportedly called 911 because Morre was in the midst of a hallucinatory episode while detoxing. Whatever the reason Finley and Cartigan were called to the scene, they did not behave the way medical professionals would be expected to while caring for someone who is obviously in bad shape.
From Black Enterprise:
Shortly after, EMS worker Peggy Finley arrived. Finley, showing signs of annoyance, can be seen pulling Moore by the arm, telling him to “get up” and “quit acting stupid.” One of the supervising officers can be heard trying to get Moore to stand up to go to the hospital. Finley’s response was “You’re going to have to walk, cause we ain’t carrying you” and “I am seriously not in the mood for this dumb s***.”
Not only did Finley treat Moore like he was something she was scraping off the bottom of her shoe rather than a suffering patient, but, according to State’s Attorney Dan Wright, she and Cardigan placed Moore face down on a gurney and tightened the straps allegedly causing him to be smothered to death.
“Knowing based upon their training, experience, and the surrounding circumstances that such acts would create bodily harm and/or death, in violation of the Criminal Code of the state of Illinois, potential penalties faced by both defendants include a range of 20 to 60 years in the Department of Corrections,” Wright said during a news conference.
According to KWTX, an autopsy found that Moore died of compressional and positional asphyxia due to prone facedown restraint on a stretcher.
“They didn’t show any compassion whatsoever,” local NAACP President Teresa Haley said during a press conference Tuesday. “This was a black young man who lost his life due to negligence and we want to make sure justice is being served.”
Haley, who also said she believes the EMS workers “were treating him rougher because he was Black,” noted that if not for the body-cam footage, Finley and Cardigan would have gotten away with their treatment of Moore.
“What I must say is the Springfield Police Department did an awesome job and without the body cams we wouldn’t have this information,” she said.
Moore’s death is still currently being investigated by the Illinois State Police, Sangamon County State’s Attorney’s Office and the Sangamon County Coroner. Meanwhile, Finley and Cardigan are being held in the Sangamon County Jail on a $1 million bond.
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