Photo shows efforts made by paramedics, police to save lives

By Ashley Wiebe
November 26, 2018 - 4:40pm Updated: November 26, 2018 - 7:19pm


MEDICINE HAT, AB — It was emotional for Inspector Brent Secondiak, watching EMS respond to a man who had been detained and was high on methamphetamine.

The man could barely walk and was arrested because he was a risk to himself and everyone around him.

EMS were later called, after he’d been brought into the station.

“He was really trying to be polite and pleasant with us and really just, I had to take a step back and it was really emotional about how kind he was trying to be,” Secondiak said.

Secondiak snapped a picture, showing two paramedics helping a man inside the cell block. He shared the experience on social media, writing “I wish the public could see the reaction that this terrible drug has on an individual.”

“Usually they’re very confused, very paranoid. They can be quite violent and aggressive,” he said. “They have uncontrollable movements, so this gentleman couldn’t stop moving his arms.”

“It all depends with what illicit substance was taken and how much,” said Adam Loria, public education officer with EMS.

This man was different, even kind. He opened up, sharing details about his life.

“It was really, kind of, heartfelt on what he was trying to do,” Secondiak added. “He was just dealing with his trauma inappropriately.

It’s not uncommon for paramedics to respond to the police station, it’s any time someone needs medical attention.

“We call them into our cell block approximately five to 10 times per week, so quite often,” Secondiak said. “At least once a day, they’re here.”

“Across the province, we routinely respond to arrest processing units or police detachments or at times penitentiaries, for whatever reason, for a variety of reasons,” Loria added.

“Because of his state, his physical state with use of meth, we called EMS or the paramedics here and they checked him out and, again, they were just so great to him and the way they dealt with him,” said Secondiak.

The picture seemed to hit a nerve in the community. Many people commented, saying thank you to Secondiak for sharing the story.

“I was really taken back on how many people responded and shared it,” he said.

The man was eventually released from police custody and taken to hospital for further assessment.

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