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Police officer in Ohio on paid leave after running over gunshot victim with cruiser

Victim later died
Springfield, Ohio victim run over
Posted at 10:54 AM, Jun 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-18 10:54:03-04

Officials in Ohio are investigating after a police officer in Springfield ran over a gunshot victim with her cruiser while responding to the incident on Sunday night.

That victim, 42-year-old Eric Eugene Cole, later died at a nearby hospital.

The Springfield Police Department placed Officer Amanda Rosales on paid administrative leave after dashcam video shows she ran over Cole, who called 911 for assistance with a gunshot wound.

According to WHIO-TV in Dayton, Ohio, the incident occurred at 11:15 p.m. on Sunday night. Cole had just called 911 and told dispatchers he had been shot.

"I'm in the middle of the street," Cole told 911 dispatchers according to records obtained by WHIO. "I'm about to die."

Cole remained on the phone with dispatchers as sirens blared in the background.

"They just hit me...the police," Cole told dispatchers.

Dashcam footage obtained by the Dayton Daily News shows a cruiser run over Cole, who was lying in the street. The video shows officers immediately provide aid to the victim.

Springfield Police Chief Lee Graf has said that Rosales was attempting to read house addresses in an attempt to find Cole and did not see him in the roadway.

WHIO reports that Cole was rushed to a local hospital, and he was later life-flighted to a second hospital in the region. He died early Monday morning.

According to an autopsy report obtained by WHIO, Cole had been shot in the left arm. He also suffered a fractured sternum, multiple fractured ribs, had suffered internal bleeding and experienced "blunt force trauma to his arms, knees and legs."

The coroner has not yet determined Cole's cause of death.

The Springfield News Sun reports that the Ohio State Highway Patrol is conducting an investigation into the incident.

"This was an accident," Graf said during a press conference on Wednesday. "That doesn't mean it's OK. This was not an intentional act by the officer. I am sure of that."

According to the News Sun, the local NAACP chapter is calling for transparency in the investigation.

"This is why Springfield has an NAACP," Denise Williams, President of the Springfield NAACP, told the Sun Times. "We will get all the answers. Our arms spread wide."