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Woman fakes gunshot wound at Decatur hospital, gets arrested, police say
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Woman fakes gunshot wound at Decatur hospital, gets arrested, police say


DECATUR — A Decatur woman who arrived at a hospital and appeared to be covered in blood, unresponsive and the apparent victim of a gunshot wound was arrested late Friday night after police said she admitted making the whole thing up.

The 18-year-old woman, who is dating a Decatur man but lives in Joliet, was booked on a preliminary charge of disorderly conduct at 11 p.m. in the trauma room of HSHS St. Mary’s Hospital, police said.

A sworn affidavit from Decatur police said the woman had earlier called her 22-year-old boyfriend to say she was bleeding and led him to believe she had been shot. He arrived to find her looking as if she was covered in blood and he rushed her to the hospital.

The boyfriend "advised he thought his girlfriend had been shot,” said Patrol Officer Ryan Ricker, writing in the affidavit. “He advised she was acting like she was not breathing on the way to the hospital.”

Ricker said a male nurse practitioner told him he had been notified about “a gunshot victim laying unresponsive on the floor of the lobby of St. Mary’s” and placed her in a wheelchair before taking her to the trauma room.

The nurse practitioner said the woman remained unresponsive the whole time as a medical team got ready for emergency treatment.

The nurse practitioner "said he lifted her into a hospital bed with the help of other nurses and as he was about to cut off her clothes, she stated it was a prank,” Ricker said.

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Decatur man hospitalized with life-threatening gunshot wound, police say

The officer said he later questioned her in the trauma room. "... She said she was playing a prank on (her boyfriend) by putting fake blood on herself in an attempt to make him think she had been shot,” Ricker added. “I observed her clothes to be covered in red dye.”

Decatur police Detective Sgt. Chris Copeland said the woman tied up the time of five police officers who were attempting to secure the scene of the apparent shooting and locate witnesses, getting ready for a full investigation.

“So she wasted the time of those five officers and the time and resources of however many medical staff and medical supplies were involved as they were preparing to work on her,” Copeland added.

Copeland said the woman had said she got the idea after watching a YouTube video about a similar gunshot prank.

A check of Macon County Jail records shows the woman is free on bail of $3,000 after posting a $300 bond; prosecutors had wanted bail set at $5,000. All preliminary charges are subject to review by the state attorney's office. 

2020 mug shots from the Herald & Review

Contact Tony Reid at (217) 421-7977. Follow him on Twitter: @TonyJReid


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