Watch: Shot EMT student recounts harrowing attack
When asked if he would do it all over again, Daniel Wesley said, "I wish I could have done more"
By EMS1 Staff
BATON ROUGE, La. — After being shot and run over twice while aiding a shooting victim, 17-year-old Daniel Wesley spoke to reporters about the incident from his hospital bed.
Wesley was returning home from a shopping trip with his mother when he saw a woman lying on the side of the road. While attempting to render aid, he was shot and run over twice by the shooter, Terrell Walker. He underwent surgery this week for injuries he sustained to his leg and arm. The victim, April Peck, did not survive.
“We were tending to the victim, and all of a sudden we get hit by the car,” Wesley said. “And I somehow ended up in the median.”
Wesley said Walker got out of the vehicle and told him, “If you’re helping her, you’re gonna die too.” He was then shot in his posterior. Walker attempted to shoot other responders in the area, but no one else was shot. He returned to the vehicle and shot Wesley a second time in the arm. After being shot in his posterior, he instructed a bystander to put pressure on the gunshot wound.
“My feet were hanging off the curb, and whenever he pulled away, he hit my legs and broke my femur in half,” Wesley said. “And then, basically, EMS took over from there.”
When asked what he was thinking during the incident, Wesley said, “I was thinking, ‘I’m not gonna die. He said I’m gonna kill you, and I was like, no you’re not.’ Just remain calm.”
When Wesley pulled over to aid Peck, he said no one was in the area and that he thought he would be fine. “The first thing you’re taught, as an EMT … it’s your safety over everyone else’s.”
Wesley initially had intentions to join the Army as a medic, but now he says, “I have screws in both hands, my elbow and a metal rod in my knee, so that’s probably gonna be out of the picture. My backup plan was to be an EMT and work my way up to a paramedic, but I don’t know what it is now.” However, he still intends to work in the medical field.
In the aftermath of the incident, Wesley said he tried to make light of the situation by making jokes and staying positive. Due to the intense pain in his arm, however, he had to postpone physical therapy earlier this week. Wesley said he was able to take a few steps recently. He has made progress since, and there are no other surgeries planned. He did say that after surgery, he asked his father to put on the Duke football game. Wesley’s recovery time is approximately two months, but he aims to shorten it.
One reporter asked Wesley, “You stopped out of the goodness of your heart, would you do that again?”
“I don’t see why not,” Wesley said. “I wish I could have done more. I’m glad no one else got shot.”
Prior to his interview, Wesley was visited by Walker’s cousin, who brought flowers and a card. “She was just apologizing and stuff, so I called her over to give her a hug and hold her hand. It’s in the past.”
Wesley said he forgives Walker. “I don’t know why he did it, I kind of want to know why, but yeah, it’s in the past and I can’t change it. Everything happens for a reason, I’m alive.”
The governor also paid Wesley a visit. When asked if he needed anything, Wesley asked him if he could get a vending machine with root beer in it. “Two minutes later, I have a crate of root beer. I already drank one.”
“Thank y’all for the support. Imma be back. Love y’all,” Wesley said.