Witness says paramedics ignored request to aid boy injured in auto-pedestrian crash on Leetsdale

South Adco - Northglenn Ambulance investigating

Editor's Note (Sept. 14, 2018): Earlier this month KMGH posted a story about an ambulance that was waved down by a man who had just witnessed a young boy hit by a car. The witness asked a crew from Northglenn Ambulance to pull around the corner to help the boy. When the crew did not respond by putting on lights and sirens and then didn’t turn into the intersection, the man started recording them.

The video clearly shows the ambulance sitting in traffic, then driving through the intersection, away from the accident, when the light turns green.

While our story accurately reflected the events, the graphic atop the story was inaccurate.  The graphic stated: “Paramedics Ignore Request To Help Injured Boy.” While it is true that the crew did not turn on lights and sirens and didn’t go directly to the scene of the accident, the crew did call the accident into dispatch so another crew could assist the boy.  It was incorrect for us to state that the initial crew ignored the request for assistance. We have removed the graphic from the web story.

We apologize for the error.

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DENVER -- A Denver dad who witnessed a serious crash involving a pedestrian on Leetsdale Drive Thursday night says he wants to know why two paramedics, in a South Adams County - Northglenn ambulance, ignored his requests to help a young boy injured in that crash.

"I was heading to Cherry Creek reservoir with my dog," said the witness, who asked to remain anonymous. "The two little boys, one must not have been much over the age of 8, made their way across Leetsdale, several yards west of the Quebec intersection."

He said the boys were crossing from north to south and had made it to the island in the middle of the street, and then began walking in front of cars that were stopped at the light.

They were almost on the other side, when an eastbound car began approaching in the right turn lane. The boys darted in front of the car. The younger one took the brunt of the impact.

"He flew 20 yards and lost both of his shoes," the witness said. "I couldn't believe it."

The witness added that what happened next was even more unbelievable.

He spotted an ambulance waiting at the stoplight around the corner.

"By the Grace of God, there was a paramedic sitting...in traffic," he told Denver7. 

The witness said he approached the ambulance and knocked on the window.

"I told them, 'he's on the road, you've got to go help him,'" he said.

But there was no response.

"I remember thinking they weren't understanding me. There's no reaction. I said, 'you have to go help him,'" he said.

The witness, who has a 1-year old son, said he was talking to his wife on the phone and she told him to record the ambulance, so he did.

He shared cell phone video of the ambulance, which was in the far-right southbound lane inching its way up to the intersection.

After a brief toot of the siren, the ambulance entered the intersection and proceeded southbound without stopping, while the injured boy lay in the street a few yards away.

"It's sad," the witness said. "It's something that shouldn't happen in the United States."

He said he wants to see some accountability.

Ambulance Service Reaction

Denver7 reached out to South Adams County Paramedics-Northglenn Ambulance, a nonprofit service based in Northglenn.

Initially, a director said she'd look into the claims, and then called back and said it was under investigation, so she couldn't comment.

She cautioned that there "are two sides to every story."

When asked about the nonprofit's protocol when paramedics are made aware of an accident outside their normal "coverage" area, the director said she couldn't answer that question while the incident is under investigation.

Denver7 checked with other paramedic services in metro Denver.

A couple of them said they have no formal policy, but would stop and render aid, until local authorities arrived.

One spokeswoman said without being there, it's hard to know whether there was a patient in the back of that ambulance, or whether it was on its way to pick one up.

She said, "If there was a patient inside, the paramedics may not have been able to divert attention from the patient in the ambulance."

Serious Condition

Denver Police are still investigating the accident which happened around 6 p.m.

They say the young victim remains in serious condition, but is stable.

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