Peggy Finley, a 45-year-old EMT from Illinois, has been released on bail following a favorable ruling by the Fourth District Appellate Court in Springfield. The court determined that she should be granted a lower bond compared to her co-defendant, based on applicable legislation. The ruling was made last Friday, just hours after which Finley was freed from jail.
The charges against Finley relate to the death of Earl Moore Jr., a 35-year-old man who was restrained face-down on a gurney in December 2022. At the time, Moore was experiencing hallucinations due to alcohol withdrawal. Reports suggest that during the incident, Finley allegedly made a statement to Moore expressing her unwillingness to assist him, saying, “You’ll have to walk because we won’t carry you.”
The appellate court’s decision found that the circuit court had erred in denying Finley’s motion to reduce her bond. Consequently, her bond was lowered from $1 million to $60,000. The court recognized important distinctions between Finley’s case and that of her co-defendant, including the fact that Finley did not reposition Moore, who was placed on the gurney by the police. The court also noted that Finley is a licensed professional and a mother of four, emphasizing that she does not pose a flight risk or a danger to the public.
While Finley and her co-defendant, Peter J. Cadigan, were charged with first-degree murder, the court’s focus was on the specific circumstances of Finley’s involvement. It highlighted that her alleged accountability was a result of her work as a paramedic and that she had no prior history of violence. The court determined that if granted bail, Finley would be prohibited from working as a paramedic, mitigating any potential risk to the public.
Finley paid 10% of the reduced bail amount, allowing her release from the Sangamon County Detention Facility. However, Cadigan remains in detention under a $1 million bail.
It is important to note that the events leading to Moore’s death occurred after several days of alcohol detox, during which he was experiencing hallucinations. Finley’s statement to him, expressing her unwillingness to assist, was made in the context of her frustrations and lack of patience.