According to court documents, two Illinois paramedics are facing murder charges after a patient died of positional asphyxiation shortly after being taken to a hospital in December.
Peggy Finley, 44, and Peter Cadigan, 50, were dispatched to a home in Springfield on December 18 after police requested medical assistance for a 911 caller who “was suffering hallucinations due to alcohol withdrawal,” according to a Springfield Police Department news release.
Police body camera footage shows Finley entering the home’s back bedroom while one of the officers briefs her on the patient, Earl L. Moore, Jr.
Moore is heard yelling at Finley to get up and walk to the ambulance. “You’re gonna have to walk ’cause we ain’t carrying you!” she exclaims. “I am seriously not in the mood for this dumb sh*t.”
Two officers are seen assisting Moore outside and onto the gurney. Cadigan assists Moore’s positioning, and both paramedics strap him into a prone position on the stretcher.
“The Springfield Police Department was later notified the patient had passed after arriving at the hospital,” according to a news release from the department.
Moore died of “compressional and positional asphyxia due to prone facedown restraint on a paramedic transportation cot/stretcher by tightened straps across back and lower body in the setting of lethargy and underlying chronic alcoholism.” according to the coroner’s autopsy report.
According to court documents, Finley and Cadigan were arrested on January 9 and charged with first-degree murder.
They are each being held on a $1 million bond at the Sangamon County Detention Facility.
Both are scheduled to appear in court again on January 19.
CNN has reached out to Finley and Cadigan’s attorneys for comment, but has yet to receive a response.
According to the National Institutes of Health, alcohol withdrawal is a medical condition that occurs when a person who is accustomed to regular alcohol consumption reduces or discontinues their consumption entirely.
The symptoms of alcohol withdrawal can range from insomnia, anxiety, or agitation in mild cases to delirium tremens, seizures, or hallucinations in severe cases, according to the agency.
The paramedics’ employer, Lifestar Ambulance Service, declined to comment on the case, citing the ongoing investigation.
CNN has also contacted the county’s executive chairperson for the Office of Emergency Management about its ambulance service contracts, but has yet to hear back.