by Jack Burns , The Free Thought Project:
When a mother rushed to the hospital after she heard that her son was shot, staff refused to allow her to see him, and then police arrested her for “causing a disturbance.”
When a mother received the call that her teenage son had been shot and rushed to the hospital, she dropped everything and went to see him. When she arrived, hospital personnel refused to let her see her dying son and when she begged in protest, she was arrested and taken away by police.
Nylik Moore was just 18 years old when he was shot in the back and the arm, causing injuries that took his life. When his father called his mother, Cheirha Rankins, and told her the news, she rushed to York Hospital, just a few blocks from their home.
Instead of cordially allowing Rankins to see her son, hospital personnel refused to allow the grieving mother to enter his room. Worse still, the denial of entry allegedly led the family to cause such a disturbance that Mrs. Rankins was eventually arrested.
Moore’s family simply wanted to see his body and to be allowed to grieve, but the hospital had been placed on emergency lockdown, which is standard procedure when shootings occur. Understandably, anger is present when a loved one is gunned down. Equally concerning is the safety of hospital personnel who often times get caught in the middle of revenge shootings inside medical facilities. Even with those considerations in mind, the family claims more could have been done to allow them to see Moore’s body.
The young man was pronounced dead about 30 minutes after he was shot, and taken to the hospital for treatment. But not only was the mother not allowed to see her son, she was arrested for “causing a disturbance.”
Three days passed before the family was allowed to see Moore’s body, and to properly say “goodbye” to him. The mother told WMAZ that she would have given anything to be able to see her son before he died, and that is why she put up such a fight when hospital security and police officers tried to keep her away.
“I thought I could save his life if he heard my voice,” Rankins said. “I just wanted him to hear my voice.”
Following Moore’s death, the coroner conducted an examination. The body, which usually is then seen by the family, was sent to the morgue where an autopsy was conducted.
The mayor, the chief of police, and hospital administrators are now investigating the incident. Coroner Pam Gay said it is normally routine procedure for the family to be allowed to see the body, but Rankins had already been arrested and cited for “disorderly conduct.” That charge was later rescinded but the damage was done and the grieving mother was prevented from viewing her son’s body.
“If we don’t do it, then the family won’t see their loved one until the body returns from the autopsy…We try to do everything within our power to make that happen here [in the hospital],” Gay said.