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Do you agree the EMT worker should be charged?

New York emergency medical technician accused of standing by while a pregnant woman died of an asthma attack faces criminal charges and could serve time in jail if convicted.

Melissa Jackson, 23, surrendered today to face charges of official misconduct for failing to try to save the life of 25-year-old Eutisha Rennix in a Brooklyn bakery last December. If convicted, Jackson could be sentenced to a year in prison.

She and her boyfriend, EMT Jason Green, 32, were on their lunch break when Rennix suffered the asthma attack at the Au Bon Pain bakery. But the couple allegedly did not administer the life-saving measures they were trained to. Instead, Jackson called a dispatcher for help.

Jackson's lawyer, Benjamin Heinrich, says that call for help was enough. He told AOL News that Jackson is "absolutely not" guilty of the charges against her. "She acted," he told the New York Daily News. "She called directly to the disp


Asked by sweet-a-kins at 2:23 PM on Oct. 12, 2010 in Politics & Current Events

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This question is closed.
Answers (19)
  • Yes lunch or not you are in a field of saving lifes that should be your priority.

    Answer by hot-mama86 at 4:02 PM on Oct. 12, 2010

  • My husband was a volunteer firefighter and he was REQUIRED to administer care if he was ANYWHERE that someone may need it. And yes, he could get in trouble for not helping, whether or not he was "on duty" and why wouldn't someone want to help another human being if they had the ability to do so? It would seem to me that it would be a natural instinct to jump in and it would be harder to stand back and do nothing. I don't know all the details of this case of what actually went on so I am not judging them. But I do think that people should do what they can to help someone that needs it.

    Answer by sue118 at 2:39 PM on Oct. 12, 2010

  • When I was certified in CPR, I was told that if I refused to administer CPR I could be charged. Yes, she should be held responsible.

    Answer by matthewscandi at 2:44 PM on Oct. 12, 2010

  • depends on what the local/state laws are. If they told (for liability) reasons they must call dispatch, then perhaps they were doing the right thing. In this sue happy nation, they may have been told they are personally liable if something goes wrong while they try to help someone while "not on duty"... But then if they were 'charged', then I am not sure... Would need more legal info than just this article... ;o)

    Answer by grlygrlz2 at 2:58 PM on Oct. 12, 2010

  • My father has been an EMT and a firefighter longer then I've been alive and he's always said that no matter if he's on duty or not he knows how to save someone's life and if someone's in trouble not only is it his obligagtion as a trained professional it's what any decent human being would do. He was disgusted when this story broke that all they did was stand there on the phone with dispatch when they knew full well what measures they could take to prevent her situation from getting worse until on duty help arrived on scene!

    Answer by BlueCollarMama at 5:09 PM on Oct. 12, 2010

  • What I don't understand is how one human being can stand there and allow another to suffer or die when he knew how to help...and how any other human being could support him in that decision....

    This ^

    Thats jacked up.


    Answer by UpSheRises at 2:56 PM on Oct. 12, 2010

  • There is a no fault law so bystanders don't face charges if they do not come to the aid of another person. I'm not sure if an EMT is any different.

    Answer by itsmesteph11 at 5:12 PM on Oct. 12, 2010

  • They were on a lunch BREAK, not off-duty!! They SHOULD have stepped in, but they were being selfish UNION employees!! As a former Boston Paramedic, I stopped ALL. THE. TIME to assist in motor vehicle accidents, when I was "off duty," and EMS hadn't arrived, or only police had responded thus far. And I did this as a "good samaritan" and within my level of training.

    I teach and heavily stress the importance of the Good Samaritan laws when I teach CPR and First Aid classes...because I feel it is VERY important that ANYONE with emergency training do SOMETHING, and I teach them ways that they CAN help, even if they don;t have their "handy dandy" pocket mask or first aid kit on them.

    Answer by LoriKeet at 7:27 PM on Oct. 12, 2010

  • WOW, I don't care if they were on vactaion, they are trained to save lives... they should hold that duty and responsibilty high!! They could have saved that woman!! How cruel and disgusting... How pregnant was she? I assume the baby died too? :( How sad... a chicken sandwhich more important than a human life :( SMFH

    Answer by JuLiAnSmOmMy317 at 12:04 AM on Oct. 13, 2010

  • sweet-a-kins

    Comment by sweet-a-kins (original poster) at 2:25 PM on Oct. 12, 2010