This first hand account can be seen as a supplement to the work here of BentLiberal. It is a firsthand account of the last two weeks by a longtime Oakland resident, crossposted from Fire on the Mountain, which also has some cool photos.
New Year’s Day
On the early morning of January 1, I happened to be in the Emergency Room of Oakland General. Word came in that there had been a disturbance on a Bay Area Rapid Transit train at Fruitvale Station and patients were expected. The first ambulance brought in a guy who had leapt from the platform when BART police stopped a crowded train and started pulling young male “troublemakers” off. His legs were fucked up.
Then the paramedics brought in Oscar Grant. He was still alive and talking. Techs were telling him “Hang in there, hang in there,” as they tried to reinflate the lungs collapsed by a police bullet and to re-transfuse the blood he was losing–fast. His heart rate collapsed and CPR brought him back so he could be wheeled into the Operating Room, but the internal bleeding couldn’t be stanched in the OR, and Oscar Grant died.
There’s one thing I want to highlight here. When Oscar Grant was brought in, he had a deep hole in his back, the entry wound, but on the other side you could actually see the bullet pressing out against the skin of his chest from the inside like a big pimple. It was removed on the spot. (ER personnel don’t often go around fishing out bullets, unless it’s life-threatening–that’s TV stuff–but this one took only a quick incision to remove.) The slug was flattened, completing the picture of someone who had been shot in the back while pressed right up against a very hard, flat surface.