On January 11, 2014, Melissa Christian presented Officer Christopher Dewitt with the Buddy Christian Life Saving Award for using a Buddy Kit to help save a life.
On January 5, 2014, Athens-Clarke County Police Officers responded to a stabbing that had just occurred at a local nightclub. Upon their arrival, the scene was very chaotic. There was a large crowd which greatly outnumbered the officers on scene. The crowd was angry that police were at the scene and not an ambulance. While officers held back the crowd, Officer Christopher Dewitt immediately rendered emergency aid to a victim of multiple stab wounds with his agency issued Buddy Kit. Not only did Officer Dewitt’s rendering aid with the Buddy Kit help to slow the blood loss, it also gave the crowd visual proof that the police were actively trying to save the victim’s life until an ambulance arrived. Without a trauma kit like the Buddy Kit, officers could only have stood by until the ambulance arrived. Officer Dewitt recounts the following:
When I arrived on scene the victim was standing up and leaning against the hood of an SUV. I immediately assisted him to the ground, and slightly elevated his legs in an attempt to keep blood in his head and torso. I first addressed the victims stab wound to his upper left chest. This appeared to be the most critical wound due to its location to vital organs and the potential risk of a tension pneumothorax developing. I attempted to use a Hyfin Chest Seal on this wound, but the bandage folded in on its self and became unusable. I then successfully applied my second Hyfin seal to the wound. I then addressed the puncture to the victims left flank with a Celox dressing. I used the Celox dressing due to its coagulating properties, and the wounds proximity to the victim’s kidney had a higher chance of significant bleeding. Finally I applied a compression dressing to the victims puncture wound to his stomach. I used members of the crowd to assist with holding the victims legs, and applying pressure to his wounds. The victim also had a laceration to his left shoulder. This wound did not appear to pose a life threatening injury, and I had no more dressings on my person to apply to the wound. I left this wound untreated until EMS arrived. When I turned the victim over to EMS I informed them that the victim had been treated with a Celox dressing, and I provided them the bandage’s packaging for reference.