North Carolina Paramedic Accused of Sexually Assaulting Teenager Released 37 Minutes After Arrest

A North Carolina paramedic accused of sexually assaulting a 17-year-old girl in an ambulance during a medical emergency has been released on bail 37 minutes after his arrest, much to the frustration of the police chief.

Press release from the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department Shown Akingbiwaju Joseph Opadele, 31, was arrested and charged with sexual intercourse under the pretext of medical treatment on Tuesday.

Charlotte police say a 17-year-old was taken to Atrium Health Maine after experiencing a “medical episode” on January 17. The 17-year-old allegedly told hospital staff that she had been sexually assaulted by Obadil in the ambulance on the way to the hospital.

Witness testimony and the findings of the sexual assault kit led to a warrant for Obadil’s arrest on March 7.

However, Chief of Police Johnny Jennings expressed frustration with the bail system in Mecklenburg County after Obadil was released from jail on an unsecured $15,000 bail just 37 minutes after his arrest, writing On Twitter:

37 minutes. That’s how long it took for a Fort Mill paramedic to be released from prison after he was arrested by CMPD and charged with sexually assaulting a 17-year-old patient. He was released on an unsecured bond of $15,000. What message are we sending to the most vulnerable…in our society? I look forward to continuing work on the Pretrial Integrity Act to bring about greater accountability in pretrial release conditions.

WCNC mentioned Jennings is working with lawmakers to develop a “Pretrial Integrity Act,” which would “change how bonds are awarded to prevent suspects from getting out so quickly.”

Tim McMichael, head of Fort Mill EMS, indicated that the agency will conduct its own investigation into the incident, according to WCNC.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police say the case is “active and ongoing” and has asked the public to contact the crime-stopper at 704-334-1600 with information relevant to this or any related case.

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