Shocking new details were announced on Thursday in an investigation involving Okaloosa County EMS Paramedics. Investigators say Kayla Dubois, 24, and Christopher Wimmer, 33, were taking selfies with patients in the back of the ambulances. Both were arrested, and charged with felonies.
The two former paramedics are facing charges after a “selfie war.”
“I think it was a sick, juvenile game… It was a sick, juvenile game I don’t know any other wat to describe it,” said Okaloosa Sheriff Larry Ashley. “Who can be the most gross… who can be the most vile… who can I get a picture with… it’s humiliation.”
All 41 of the patients in the photos were identified. Their ages range from 24 to 48. Two of the patients pictured have since died, and three of the pictures were consensual. Of the remaining 36, there are 19 women, and 17 men pictured. One of the photos was of a sheriff’s deputy. Five of the patients are homeless.
Many of the patients were unconscious, sedated, or intubated when the pictures were snapped.
“If it were my family, if it were me, I’d certainly seek whatever remedy I could,” Sheriff Ashley said.
Details of two pictures were described today. One involved Wimmer holding open a sedated patient’s eye. The other one is a selfie of Wimmer, with an elderly patient’s breast exposed.
“All patients were medically treated as they were supposed to be. This has more to do with invasion of privacy and respect and dignity than it does the care,” Sheriff Ashley explained. Both paramedics are now
Both paramedics are no longer employed. Three other EMS employees were also fired because they knew about the pictures but didn’t report them to a supervisor. The investigation began when other employees came forward.
“Employees coming forward to self-report this… Going on… That speaks volume on their character morales and their ethic responsibilities that they have not only to our department but to the county, and to the citizens of Okaloosa county,” said Public Safety Director Alvin Henderson.
The selfies were taken between September 2015 and this past April. A prosecutor said he’ll push for the maximum punishment for Dubois and Wimmer.
Dubois is facing two charges of interception and disclosure of oral communications, a third-degree felony. Wimmer is facing seven of the same charge, in addition to a misdemeanor battery charge for holding the patient’s eye open. Each of the felony charges carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison.