Monday, April 26, 2010

Guatemalan Good Samaritan dies ignored by passersby

A Guatemalan Good Samaritan has been hailed as a hero who senselessly died after trying to help an attack victim.

New York police alleged that on April 18 at least twenty people in Jamaica, Queens passed by Hugo Alfredo Tale-Yax after he came to the aid of a female attacked by an unknown assailant. A surveillance video showed that for over an hour the homeless Tale-Yax laid bloody and struggling for life on the sidewalk while pedestrians ignored him. One person lifted Tale-Yax’s head momentarily before moving on while another took a photo of him of the dying man with a cell phone. It took almost ninety minutes until someone called emergency services where called yet Tale-Yax was found dead from multiple stab wounds.

The death of Tale-Yax has been compared to that of Kitty Genovese in 1964, which led to increased analysis into the bystander effect. That phenomena- which claims that the more the bystanders the less the chance of help- may’ve manifested itself two Sundays ago. In the end, the body of Tale-Yax is off to Central America for burial:
The Post reports that Tale-Yax was a "Guatemalan immigrant [who] eked out a living working odd jobs, but he was recently out of work and lost his home in Queens." His body is being sent back to Guatemala where his parents live. (Tale-Yax’s cousin Edwin) Tacam said, "He lost his life trying to help someone else — that’s brave. I guess you could say he was a hero."
Anyone with tips into the death of the 31-year-old is urged to call the NYPD's Crime Stoppers Hotline at 800-577-TIPS.

Image- Sky News
Online Sources- Gothamist, NY1, ABC News, Wikipedia, Listverse, Village Voice

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