18 year old woman dead after chasing cop with knife. Family wanted ambulance instead.

Yes, you read that correctly. What you will also read correctly is this cobbled together “news” story written to inflame your hatred of the po-po:

Worried family calls 911 hoping for ambulance, cops show up instead and KILL HER

Great work on the headline there Eric Owens, Education Editor. I guess there’s no need to think this call through as far as my 3rd grade daughter could, but let’s give it a try shall we?

1.  The family should have intervened long ago.  Years ago.  Waiting until someone with known mental health issues starts grabbing the cutlery is not the time to reach out for help.

2.  Ambulances can not make people take psych medications.  Again, see #1 “Family.”  So far we’ve identified people far more responsible for the death of this girl than the police, but let’s keep going.

3.  They called 911 “hoping” for an ambulance.  No one calls 911 and requests resources, that’s not how it works.  People call and state what is happening, the dispatcher assigns the appropriate resource for the situation described.  Speaking of which…

4.  Paramedics can not safely deal with persons who have stated their desire to harm others or who may have weapons.  Paramedics are trained to assess and treat medical and traumatic conditions.  The reason the dispatcher sent a Police officer is because what happened happens far more often than people realize: People who want to hurt others pick up stuff that hurts others.

5.  Even the 12 year old kid saw the knife.  Let’s put you in the Officer’s shows for a moment.  A woman chases you with a knife.  A woman with known psychological issues.  A woman who is not taking her medications.  Now what do you do?  There can be all sorts of outcry about tazers and tackles and other such nonsense but when it comes down to it the Officer did what they had to do to remove the threat.

6.  To all of you about to comment that I don’t know what I’m talking about, I wasn’t there, I don’t have the full story, go over to Eric’s story and comment there first.


Eric, here are some headlines I think better fit the story:

“Woman killed by police after chasing them with knife off psych meds”

“Officers forced to kill knife wielding woman after family fails to assure she is healthy”

“Family unable to help 18 year old prior to her chasing police with a knife and being shot”

“Ambulances do not help people take medicine”

“Education Editor writes inflammatory headline oblivious to how 911 works”


Motorcop has a post up that should shut up all the “Why didn’t they just taze her” folks.  Go have a read and see this situation through an Officer’s eyes.

A human being is dead because someone waited too long to help her.  Blame the family, the system, the Doctors, Obama, Bush, God, heck blame me, pick your enemy, but don’t turn this into a situation where the evil police are to blame. They were just there at her worst hour and did what they are trained to do when people attack them with knives.



Post about our site and win a prize! – Seems Legit

I was going to let this one go and chalk it up to a bad decision.

A couple of weeks ago I got an email from a popular clothing and gear manufacturer to review one of their products.  Not uncommon.  I frequently get requests to review gear, host a guest post about an online EMT class etc etc.

They’re all form letters likely sent to any email address that relates to a blog.


I’ve been asked to review helmets, boots, socks, you name it.  If the company sends me an honest email and meets my requirements, I review the product, write my honest review and post it.


99 times out of 100 the solicitation is bogus and often includes terminology reserved for Nigerian Princes.

“Please to review our new item!” etc etc.


When a company I respected reached out asking for a product review, I was curious to hear what they had in mind.

What they had in mind was no where close to what I expected. [my edits]

“Hi, [ no name…sure giveaway]


[a person you’ve never heard of] had initially emailed you [no they didn’t but it seems like you missed it, right?] to to [poorly proofread, I mean who wrote this? Me?] let you know that we [we who?] have teamed up with [a company you respected] for a giveaway! [company] is the leading provider for law enforcement and tactical gear  and wanted to see if you would be interested in blogging about an experience that you have had using a [company] product. If you have not used [company], that’s okay too! You could also write about a product that you are interested in using. We are doing a [companyBag and yes, the lack of a space between the company prize and the word Givaway is a … giveaway—->]Giveaway with lots of great stuff for the best blog writers!


If you are interested please a post [again with the proofreading!] about your experience/write about a product that you’re dying to try~!


To Qualify the Requirements are:

1. 300-500 words

2. This must be 100% unique and original content

3. 1 link to the main webpage ([company website])

4. 1 link to the product that you have used or would like to try out ([hint hint, here’s a product we likely want to push])


When you have posted this article, please email  me and provide me with the URL so that you can be entered in the contest.


This giveaway will start Wednesday July, 11th and the winning blogger will be selected on August 31, 2012. We will enter in the URLs and randomly choose a winner. The winner will be contacted via e-mail no later than September 14, 2012. When you are contacted I will ask for all your info as to where to mail the [company prize, which is never explained] prize giveaway!


We wish you the best of luck!! And we hope that you decide to be a part of this amazing giveaway!


Good luck,

[another person you’ve never heard of]”

An email address not affiliated with the company reached out in Nigerian Prince fashion to ask me to review a product and write a blog post about it.

But wait!  There’s more!

If I meet the qualifications listed below I could be entered in a contest with other bloggers to win a prize?  All I had to do was review a product I had never touched, write a 300-500 word review and post a few link backs within my post to be entered to win?


I made a snarky comment on facebook soon after and dismissed it as a fly by night internet PR firm’s idea of drumming up site traffic.


Then I got an email today reminding me to get my post up soon to be considered for the contest:

“This is just a reminder about the [manufacturer deleted] giveaway contest. Time is passing by quickly! We know that sometimes there is so much to do that you don’t have time to write a lengthy post. So for those of you interested but don’t have the time, we have a different option that you can do to enter into the giveaway! Please email me for further details. For those that want to take a stab at it yourself, below are the requirements!

Thank you for you time and I wish you all luck!”


No I didn’t email them to get a likely canned “guest post” nor will I.  Heck, part of me wants to send this in as my entry to their “contest.”


Some companies understand the blogger, some go the less expensive route and hire a company or a 10th grade intern to dream up ways to drum up traffic.

Sorry, guys.  If you were aware of this you lost big points in my book.  If you didn’t know about it, you lost even more.  Either way this is a letter in your file and I hope one of your folks sees this and thinks, “Oh crap, was that us?”


I will refrain from mentioning the manufacturer, but if you follow me, you already know.


A Letter in the File – “Bystanders”

For you new people, it’s been awhile since I’ve fired up the typewriter here at HMHQ to issue a formal reprimand, but this really got under my skin.


I was out as the supervisor when dispatched to a reported fainting on the sidewalk.  We get these calls all the time from out of town visitors not used to seeing the homeless sleeping off a bottle of $5 vodka in a puddle of their own urine.  I guess wherever they come from that’s abnormal.  This is not the reason for your letter.

Still lights and sirens because you never really know, I realize I am the only unit responding since there is a second alarm fire a few blocks away and all the local engines are at it.  Dispatch advises they are “out of medics” and will send one when it is available.  They call it “medic to follow.”  This is not the reason for your letter.

On scene there is a large line on the sidewalk for a concert at a venue a block away.  It appears a teen sensation is performing tonight (it’s only 1pm) and the line is already easily 10,000 deep.  Hidden within this throng of people both young and not so is a hand waving for my attention.  The crowd seems unwilling to part from their place in the 10 person wide line that wraps around the sidewalk and I have to literally push people aside.  This is not the reason for your letter.

A security guard from a block away sees my little buggy (that’s what we call our Chief and Captain cars) nearby and comes to help.  He removes the large gate the police have set up so that I can more easily access my patient, an elderly man who is unconscious in the arms of his maybe 14 year old grandson.  Of the HUNDREDS of able bodied men nearby, none step forward as, with ALS bag, O2 and Zoll M Series, I grab my patient (breathing with pulses) and carry him into a shady area out of the 90 plus degree heat about 40 feet away.  This is not the reason for your letter.

After my primary and secondary survey and the removal of some heavy clothing my patient is opening his eyes and talking about how hot it is.  A bit of cool water on a towel to the back of the neck and a 250cc bolus has him cracking jokes about the young pop star performing this evening.  As the ambulance arrives and takes a report I have a chance to stand up and take a better look around.  No one is looking at what is happening just outside the line to the show of the year.  This is not the reason for your letter.

Then you speak up.


You and your “girlfriend” sitting in the cafe not 10 feet from me the entire time.  Watching me call for an ambulance, check for pulses, apply the NRB, the monitor, start the line, have the crying 14 year old hold the bag so I could help his grand father…you.

Close to 12 minutes you watched this man in distress, the grandson too, not to mention a lone paramedic who could use one more set of hands…any hands.

You are an “Off duty paramedic” and she’s an “ER nurse” and NOW you ask if I need a hand?

A letter in the file for both of you.  Not for leaving me to help my patient alone, but for not coming over and offering your assistance to HIM or his grandson.  I was fine, but the kid needed someone to take the bag, hold his hand, anything, but you sat there within earshot the entire time, then jump in when the ambulance arrived?

If it was up to me you’d both be getting days off, but since you were both “off duty” and “drinking” I guess it was too far out of the question to help out doing something other than patient care.  Next time, just blend in with the crowd.