For 15 minutes, a man shot by an off-duty officer in Houston lay bleeding from two gunshots in his abdomen as responding officers stood by without providing first aid. At one point, as the victim, a 53-year-old black man, raised his head, an officer used his foot to keep the man's face on the pavement, according to a dashboard camera video supplied to the New York Times by the man's relatives. From the time the episode was first reported In July 2014, and including the time the man, Charles Goodridge, lay unaided on the ground, it took more than an hour for him to arrive at an emergency room. An hour later, he was dead.
The length of time Goodridge was left unassisted has angered his relatives and has been criticized by two witnesses and by law enforcement officials. The case has raised racially charged questions, not only about what led to the shooting but the actions of the police officers in the aftermath. “He was shot twice, bleeding, and nobody did anything,” said Goodridge's mother, Lucille, 75. “I don't think that if he was white they would have just left him like that. A dog would have gotten more attention than he did.” It is not clear if Goodridge, a former computer programmer, would have survived if the officers had rendered aid before the paramedics arrived. Experts on police procedure and law enforcement officials said the off-duty officer and his colleagues should have done more to assist Goodridge.