(CN) – An emergency medical technician was not required to report his suspicions that a co-worker had sexually molested a suicidal teenage girl in the back of their ambulance, the Michigan Court of Appeals ruled.
Timothy O’Connell was the driver, and Matt DiFillippo was the EMT in the back.
O’Connell did report the suspicions to his supervisor, but the victim’s father alleged that O’Connell was required to make a report according to the state’s child protection law.
The Michigan Court of Appeals received this case on remand from the Michigan Supreme Court “for reconsideration of the reporting requirements under the child protection law.”
The law requires several people in a child’s life to report their suspicions to authorities, including doctors, therapists, teachers, law enforcement officers and clergy.
But because EMTs are not on the list, the appeals court ruled that the father’s claim for failure to report abuse must be dismissed.
“We wish to emphasize that the absence of a statutory duty … to report this wrongdoing to child protective services does not impact the propriety or alleviate the moral obligation of contacting law enforcement to seek an investigation of such reprehensible criminal conduct,” Judge Michael Talbot wrote.