There was little attempt to save the life of LaShanda Calloway, a Wichita woman who was stabbed and lay dying in a convenience store while spectators stepped over her. On June 23, Calloway, 27, was stabbed during an altercation in the store. Two minutes later, someone decided to call 911. Surveillance video in the store shows at least five shoppers walking over her body and one even stopping to take a picture of the victim with a cell phone, though no one thought to actually treat her wounds or comfort her. Even the story itself was not widely reported until a reporter for the Wichita Eagle remarked on the contents of the surveillance video.

The scene took place before 6 p.m. that day when the two women, Calloway and a 19-year-old woman with a knife got into a fight which resulted in Calloway’s being stabbed. At 5:58 p.m., fellow customer Rob Thurman dialed 911 after separating the two women before the stabbing took place. At 6 p.m., firefighters arrived at the scene, the fire station being located just five blocks from the scene, but despite Thurman’s waving at them to come in to help Calloway, they stood outside and waited for the Kansas Highway Patrol to arrive. This behavior is typical for firefighters. While they are trained to be the first medical responders, they don’t have any means of defense so they are told to stand off the scene until police secure the scene. At 6:04, firefighters were finally able to treat Calloway who by this time was near cardiac arrest. She later died at the hospital.

Later, the 19-year-old woman was charged with first-degree murder, and another suspect turned himself in and has not yet been charged. The district attorney will decide if any of the neglectful shoppers could be charged as well. Currently, neglecting to help an injured person is only considered an offense if dealing with an auto accident. Thurman said that had he known that help for Calloway would be delayed both by the customers and the fire department that he would have driven her to the hospital himself. At the same time, it is scary to think that even in a store full of people, no one is willing to help a person in need.

 

For related articles visit

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,287953,00.html and http://www.topix.net/content/kri/2007/06/stabbing-response-illustrates-quandary

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