Paramedics Allegedly Took Selfies With Unconscious Patients as Part of 'Selfie War' Contest
Two former Florida paramedics allegedly took dozens of selfies with unconscious or incapacitated patients as part of what authorities termed an ongoing “selfie war” competition, PEOPLE confirms.
In a press statement obtained by PEOPLE, the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office announced charges of interception and disclosure of oral communications against Kayla Renee Dubois, 24, and Christopher Wimmer, 33.
Wimmer also faces a battery charge, since, in one of the selfies he allegedly shot, it appears he’s holding a sedated patient’s eyelids open. Investigators also allege he posed for a selfie with an elderly woman while one of her breasts was exposed.
According to investigators, Dubois and Wimmer both allegedly used cell phones to snap numerous selfies with over 40 patients. Many of these patients were allegedly sedated, intubated or otherwise unconscious. Police say the images were allegedly shot for the emergency medical technicians’ amusement.
Of the 41 patients police were able to identify, two have died and only three allegedly gave consent for the photos. Out of the remaining 36 patients, 19 are female and 17 are male, the statement says.
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Five of the patients are homeless, according to authorities.
An investigation into the alleged “selfie war” began two months ago, when Dubois and Wimmer allegedly shared some of the images they shot with three other EMS workers, who’d immediately reached out to police.
Detectives eventually learned Dubois and Wimmer allegedly exchanged text messages, challenging each other to produce more and more outrageous selfies.
Dubois was fired a day before the initiation of the police department’s investigation into the illicit images – just hours after Wimmer tendered his resignation.
It was unclear Friday whether either defendant had an attorney to speak on their behalf. It was also unknown if either had entered a plea to the charges against them.