Several witnesses are accused of filming a fatal crash while the victims burned to death. On Monday afternoon, a vehicle hit a barrier on Highway 67 in Dallas, Texas. Authorities said the car eventually came to rest between two concrete barriers. However, due to extensive damage, the driver and passenger were trapped inside.
Police Lieutenant Anthony Williams arrived on scene within minutes. Although he attempted to help the victims, it was simply too late. Williams said the entire car was engulfed in flames.
The lieutenant said he is devastated, as he was forced to watch the driver and passenger burn to death. He said it was “the first time [he] ever prayed for someone to go ahead and pass.”
Williams explained that he simply wanted the victims’ suffering to end.
Lieutenant Williams was further disturbed, as several witnesses used their cell phones to film the fatal crash. Even worse, they continued recording while both victims burned to death. Williams said their behavior was disgusting:
“A person’s actually dying in front of their eyes, and rather than you making it a priority, putting yourself in the role of a first responder, just to try to help out in some way, you choose your priority to be filming somebody’s death.”
Although the fire was eventually extinguished and the victims were removed from the car, medical examiners said the bodies were unrecognizable.
Authorities said the accident is still under investigation. However, they believe the vehicle hit a portion of the concrete barrier that was protruding into the lane. Following the collision, the vehicle reportedly spun out of control and came to rest between two barriers. Witnesses said the vehicle burst into flames with the victims trapped inside.
It is difficult to understand why the witnesses filmed the crash while the victims burned to death. Morally, their behavior was certainly questionable. However, they were not in violation of the law.
As cell phones have become a necessity, rather than a luxury, witnesses often have the means to film tragedies as they occur. Although the behavior may seem abnormal, it is becoming more prevalent. Through social media, the clips are often shared with thousands of viewers.
Lieutenant Williams was specifically concerned at the witnesses were filming the crash instead of trying to help the victims. The Lieutenant said filming tragic events, and posting the clips online, is the “perversion of social media.” It is unclear whether the witnesses could have offered assistance. However, Williams wishes they had tried.
[Image via CBS News]