Crime and Punishment

Rookie Cop hailed as hero after saving knife-fight victim’s life

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NYPD Officer Timothy O’Neil

Cops have had a bad run of it lately, being blamed for larger societal breakdowns beyond their control. There have certainly been some dubious situations, and even outright malfeasance, but the overwhelming majority of police are unjustly tarred by not just the latter but even by the perfectly reasonable actions of their comrades. I figured it would be appropriate to share a bit of knife-related good news and proffer kudos to NYPD Officer Timothy O’Neil for saving a man’s life following a knife fight.

From New York Post:

NYPD Officer Christopher O’Neil served two years as a Navy combat medic in Afghanistan and then experienced a sort of déjà vu Saturday night — on the streets of Fort Greene.

A 36-year-old victim of a knife fight was squirting blood from a severed artery in his upper left arm, and was probably minutes from death, when the newbie cop saw him wearily standing in the middle of Brooklyn’s Carlton Avenue.

“There was still blood squirting out of the wound,” O’Neil told The Post. “I ran back to my patrol car and grabbed the trauma kit from the trunk.”

“I knew it was absolutely urgent, we needed to do something now,” he explained. “As I ran toward him, I was putting on the gloves and I removed the tourniquet from the kit. I shimmied it up his arm. As I was tightening it down, another officer assisted me.”

“The blood stopped squirting, but the wound was partially exposed,” he said. “I grabbed a trauma bandage out of the bag and applied it to staunch any additional bleeding.”

“He was very lethargic. I tried keeping him conscious, tried talking to him to keep him awake. That’s when EMS rolled up.”

O’Neil helped place the wounded man on the stretcher and into the ambulance.

Lynch has since been arrested on charges of assault and criminal possession of a weapon for stabbing another man, Kyrif Given, who was also hit with assault and weapons charges.

O’Neil was pretty low-key about his life-saving effort, only saying, “It makes me feel good that I could help this man. I did my job, that’s it.”

None of the extreme-bleeding cases I worked on during my EMS career were from stabbings, but any bleeder is extremely stressful. They are messy, and you are in a race against time to gain control of the situation. While Officer O’Neil remains modest about his action, I am happy to congratulate him on a job well-done.

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