Police need advanced emergency medical training to react in the face of potentially deadly situations, a provincial judge declared yesterday.
The recommendation followed a fatality inquiry of a police shootout in June 2006, when a handful of rookie cops stood “in shock” as both a suspect and fellow officer lay bleeding from gunshot wounds.
Const. Dan Furman would never have survived three shots fired by handgun-wielding Darren Cardinal if Const. Jason Mitchell hadn’t applied specialized first-aid training he received in the Canadian Armed Forces.
“Furman testified that as he lay on the basement floor of the residence that night, he remembered a lot of EPS members were looking at him with blank faces. When he later asked them what they were thinking, they told him that they did not know what to do,” provincial court judge Bruce Garriock wrote in a 20-page report.
Cardinal shot the officer after police entered a home at 12840 – 68 St. Officers fired back, striking Cardinal 11 times.
Witnesses said Cardinal stated many times: “If the police showed up, they would not take him alive.”
Having trained with wounds resulting from gunshots and explosives, Mitchell was familiar with Furman’s condition, which included a punctured lung.
Furman was hospitalized for 11 days and off work for eight months. When he returned to duty in the summer of 2008, he proposed EPS members undergo casualty care training.
“Furman emphasized that the point of his proposal was to sustain life until medical training arrived by providing EPS members with the requisite knowledge and tools to deal with these exceptional circumstances,” Garriock wrote.
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