Father says paramedics didn't take dying son's injuries seriously
Published Monday, December 4, 2017 9:41AM EST
Last Updated Tuesday, December 5, 2017 2:01PM EST
The father of a Good Samaritan who was shot Saturday night is accusing paramedics of not doing enough to save the young man’s life as he lay dying in a downtown Hamilton, Ont. street.
“We begged [the paramedic], ‘Please send him to hospital.’ He didn’t care and treated us rudely,” Majed Al-Hasnawi told CTV Toronto on Monday. “If he did it on time, there was big time for the doctor to save [my son’s] life. So, the paramedic took part in killing my son.”
Nineteen-year-old Yosif Al-Hasnawi was shot in the stomach Saturday night, right outside the mosque he had just been attending, after he tried to help a senior who was being accosted by two younger men. Al-Hasnawi died that night in hospital.
Early Monday morning, a 20-year-old suspect identified as James Anthony Robert Matheson was arrested without incident in connection with the case. He has been charged with accessory after the fact to murder.
Police, however, are still searching for the alleged shooter: 19-year-old Dale Burningsky King of Hamilton, who is wanted for second degree murder. Police say King should be considered “armed and dangerous.”
It is believed that the young man was left on the street for at least 25 minutes before being taken to hospital. Witnesses say paramedics, apparently thinking the young man had been shot with a pellet gun, initially did little to help him.
“The paramedic [was] telling him [to] stop acting,” Majed Al-Hasnawi said. “I’ve never seen such treatment.”
According to Al-Hasnawi, the last words he heard his son say were, “I cannot breathe.”
Al-Hasnawi’s account has been corroborated by other eyewitnesses.
“They left him on the ground, did not even respond to him,” Mohammed Hasan told reporters. “They were laughing.”
Another witness said the young victim was roughly thrown on a stretcher as though the paramedic was a “baggage handler at the airport.”
"He was lying there complaining he was hurting and they kept saying he was faking," Tom Raczynski, who witnessed the aftermath of the shooting, told The Canadian Press. “The one paramedic kept saying, 'Oh you're a good actor’… I just thought it was disgusting.”
In response to these accusations, Hamilton Paramedic Services issued a statement Monday.
“As a result of information we have received, HPS has notified the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care Investigations Branch and we have initiated an investigation,” part of that statement read. “Hamilton Paramedic Service sends its deepest condolences to the family of Yosif Al-Hasnawi during this difficult time.”
The young man, who was studying to be a doctor at Brock University, was honoured with a funeral service Monday night.
Anyone with information regarding the case or the shooting suspect’s location is being urged to contact Detective Doug Jonovich at 905-546-4863 or anonymously through Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or www.crimestoppershamilton.com (http://www.crimestoppershamilton.com). If King is seen, police are urging the public to call 9-1-1 and not approach him.
With files from CTV’s Peter Akman in Hamilton and files from The Canadian Press