“What concerns me is why we’re being targeted“: Lt Shadoe Kohime and paramedic Kayla Stepehens speak out about their brutal torture ordeal, in what must be one of the more traumatic abductions carried out on Hathian’s Fire Department staff. This paper has often highlighted the actions of gangs, but this is an article which hopes to draw attention to the ordeal that firefighters and emergency medical staff have to go through due to gang violence.
When one of her paramedic staff members didn’t turn up for work two days running, Lt. Kohime got worried and filed a missing person’s report on friend and colleague Kayla Stephens after hearing her voice on a radio call. Two days later she “..was doing a fire inspection at La Salle, I finished it, was walking back to the fire station when I was clipped by a car full of Rejects. Now I’ve known them for years, but apparently I pissed off Esperanza at the open forum with the police and then when I identified myself by name during the time her radio was open, I got someone’s attention.” Lt. Kohime then recalls how she was taken by force to an unknown destination where she was the subject of a brutal and savage torture for hours, being kept drugged and beaten for at least four days. She released her medical report to this reporter, which showed that she suffered numerous stab wounds, a broken nose, concussion, several broken bones, including a shattered right knee cap, and lacerations to other places. A drill was also used on her sternum, leaving a hole in the skin and the rib, as well as a burnt tongue from a heated screw driver being placed there and an ‘S’ carved into the flesh of her buttocks. The emergency service staff have operated with neutrality when it came to gang members needing their help: “I have known them all for many years” stated Lt. Kohime, also pointing out that her and her fellow staff members have often helped and saved many gang members from their own injuries and gang related wounds. Why would they do this to the fire fighters and EMT staff? Lt. Kohime believes she was used as “”A playtoy, something to hurt.. as for escaping well I don’t remember much, I had been drugged. But I THINK the Phantoms saved me. I mean 2 people in hoods and cloaks, I rememebr that much, I remember freaking out and then being dropped off here,” Lt. Kohime was dropped off to the Hathian General Hospital.
Lt. Kohime believed her friend was dead, “.. when they grabbed me Esperanza said they had her, but then Piper messed up later and told me she was dead and dumped somewhere Captain Andel could find her. So I think they dumped her, for lack of a better term, before they grabbed me.”
Paramedic Kayla Stephens was undergoing her own brutal torture ordeal at the hands of the Phantoms, although due to being drugged, she has problems remembering all of the details. “They took me.. the Phantoms. Or at least I think they were. Sofia Keolanui.. she was the one that did most of it, along with someone named Caris [now deceased]. After the worst of the damage, they, the Phantoms that is, traded me off to a group of other people.. That’s when I was raped.” She is recovering not just from the rape, but a broken arm, various burns, a minor laceration across the throat, carved into her stomach was the name ‘Caris.’ She has some recollection of the the second group, who had her apartment robbed of jewelery, her laptop and some money. Kayla also little idea of why they wanted to hold her hostage apart from wanting to hurt her. “The Phantoms.. Sofia.. they seemed more interested in just hurting me. I don’t know why they took me.. I was looking for a probie’s ipod they dropped and I was hit hard in the temple. Caris was with them, though. She was blonde, that’s all I saw.” She was then exchanged to another gang, “I don’t know who they were.. There was a woman with pink hair. A blond man they called Q, and another darker skinned woman they called E. There was an armband black, red, and green. It only stood out because each of them had it.” She was left for dead, dumped at an unknown location. “Someone called EMS to come get me, gave the location.. I don’t know who.”
With several bodies turning up over the past few weeks dumped in public spaces with carvings engraved in their corpses relating to gang signatures, Lt. Kohime and Kayla Stephens are lucky that they made it out alive. The firefighters and paramedics make up a valuable and vital part of this city and it is incredible that gangs would target the very people who have worked with neutrality to treat them along side law abiding citizens of Hathian.