National Civil Rights Attorney to Represent Springfield Family in Springfield EMS First-Degree Murder Case

By Benjamin Cox on January 16, 2023 at 9:12am

A nationally known civil rights attorney will reportedly represent the family of a man who died allegedly at the hands of two Springfield EMS workers.

WCIA-TV reports that Ben Crump has been retained by the family of Earl Moore, Jr. Crump is the president of the National Civil Rights Trial Lawyers Association, and has previously represented the families of George Floyd, Trayvon Martin, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor.

Finley (left) and Cadigan (right)

Moore died on December 18th after LifeStar EMS workers Peter Cadigan and Peggy Finley, strapped him face down on an ambulance stretcher after the family says he was attempting to detox from alcohol and marijuana. Moore died of “compression and positional asphyxia,” according to Dr. John Scott Denton, a forensic pathologist from Bloomington. Sangamon County Coroner Jim Allmon then ruled Moore’s death a homicide, and Sangamon County State’s Attorney Dan Wright is charging both Cadigan and Finley with first-degree murder. The Springfield Police Department released body camera footage from the three police officers on the scene who witnessed the incident.

Cadigan and Finley are scheduled to have their first court appearance Thursday. They both remain held at the Sangamon County Jail on $1 million bond. According to online court records, Finley is being represented by Springfield attorney W. Scott Hanken. The State Journal Register reports Finley and Cadigan were represented by local attorney Peter Wise at the arraignment but it wasn’t clear if he was being retained by Cadigan.

The SJR says that Black Lives Matter Springfield co-founder Sunshine Clemons and Teresa Haley, head of the Springfield branch of the NAACP and its state director, urged supporters to walk for Moore’s family in the Martin Luther King Jr. Day unity march today in Springfield. The march steps off at Pilgrim Rest Missionary Baptist Church, 1800 S. Martin Luther King Jr. Dr., at noon. A roundtable discussion about healthcare disparities for the African-American community is set to take place after the march at Pleasant Grove Baptist Church located 908 S. Martin Luther King Jr. Drive in Springfield.