A grieving Pennsylvania mother was violently arrested after trying to see her dying son.
According to FOX 43 News, Cheirha Rankins’ 18-year-old son Nylik Roger Moore was shot last Tuesday and when she and other family members went to the hospital to get information on how Nylik was doing, they were denied access. Apparently, the hospital was on lockdown due.
It’s unknown if the lockdown was a result of gun violence throughout the city that day or because of what happened to Nykil.
For Rankins, she just wanted to know if her boy was alive.
“I was no more than three minutes behind [the ambulance]. … I thought he could still be alive,” she told the York Dispatch. “But I was told I had to stay outside.”
When they demanded to be let into the hospital, it got violent.
Video shows the emotional family being physically held back and wrestled to the ground by local police. You can hear on the video an officer warn the family, “Get back or you are going to be arrested.”
Take a look here:
Rankins told FOX 43 that the police had no “remorse” for their behavior.
“The whole situation was unfair, treated unfair, and they didn’t have remorse for anything,” said Rankin.
“They had us sitting out there for a whole two hours. We didn’t see my brother,” said Markai Rankins, Nylik’s younger brother.
Even worse, Nykil had been placed and taken off life support without the family knowing.
“Was he on life support, ya’ll pulled the plug? But my family wasn’t there to know step by step!” said Nykil’s uncle Anthony Rankins.
“Let the mother be there, we didn’t care if nobody else got in!”
Even, Pam Gay, the York County Coroner, doesn’t understand why this happened, stressing that this is quite uncommon for homicides.
“We have never been told there was a policy where a family can’t view the victim of a homicide. We’ve never been told that before,” Gay said.
She added that the police are even specially trained to control emotional crowds like the Rankins family.
“One thing I will say is there’s a whole department called ‘crisis intervention’ that we use on our scenes sometimes at traffic accidents or even shootings sometimes,” she said.
York City Mayor Michael Helfrich later told Buzzfeed, “I am just frustrated and I understand why the public and media are frustrated at not having all the answers.”
While four people including Rankins were arrested and given citations, the police later withdrew them. However, Helfrich claims that the family being Black had nothing to do with their treatment.
“Obviously there is no bigoted or prejudiced action that is acceptable from our police department, and as a representative of York City, I will say the same of the hospital staff. Absolutely unacceptable.”
The York hospital released a statement apologizing about the incident:
We have talked to the family to offer our condolences and to sincerely apologize for what occurred Tuesday night. We also have offered to meet with them at their earliest convenience to discuss the issue and hear their concerns in person. These are our patients and our neighbors, and we’re deeply sorry for the pain they’re experiencing.
On Tuesday evening, our clinicians and staff were working to treat multiple trauma patients. Our hospital emergency department was placed on lockdown — which is a standard safety measure we initiate when our hospital treats someone who has been a victim of violence. During this time, a number of individuals attempted to gain access to the emergency department and became disruptive. Multiple law enforcement agencies, led by the York City Police Department, responded to ensure the security of our hospital and to protect the safety of our patients, staff and visitors. We extend our sincere appreciation and thanks to those responding agencies.