On Thursday evening, an FDNY emergency medical technician was killed in the Bronx, New York, when a man got into her ambulance and ran her over. Another female EMT was injured during the terrifying moment, which was captured on the cellphone of a witness.
Shortly after 7 p.m., Yadira Arroyo, 44, and her partner, Monique Williams, 31, were responding to a call when a passerby alert them of a stranger riding on the back bumper of their ambulance, said NYPD Deputy Chief Jason Wilcox.
When Arroyo pulled over, she and her partner exited the vehicle. Then Jose Gonzalez jumped into the driver's seat and took off in the ambulance, said FDNY Commissioner Daniel Nigro said.
Arroyo was then struck by the vehicle. Williams also struggled with the man.
After being transported to Jacobi Medical Center, Arroyo was pronounced dead. She was a 14-year veteran on the force and a mother of five. Williams was also injured, but is not in critical condition.
“They were acting very brave. They certainly wanted to continue on their way to that call,” Nigro told CBS New York. “The person had no business being in this ambulance.”
Gonzalez continued driving the stolen ambulance until the vehicle got stuck in a snowbank. Eventually a local Metropolitan Transportation Authority police K9 officer and a bystander brought down the suspect.
NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio said the MTA officer “intervened heroically and decisively.”
A Witness, Justin Lopez, captured the scene on video.
“All I see was the ambulance with the lights on the corner, and I’m wondering what’s happening, but I didn’t know it was something big,” Lopez said. “But then I see from far, I see a little tussle and somebody hop in the car, and then I see the person getting run over.”
(Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)