“I can’t think of anything that could take higher precedence than a hostage situation," the lawyer representing the distraught widow said.
Trigger Warning: This article mentions gun violence and death by suicide which some readers may find distressing.
Qualin Campbell, 32, was held hostage by a stranger in his car and texted his wife to call for help. According to The New York Post, his wife, Talija Campbell, said she called 911 just after 1 p.m. on June 2, when Qualin texted his location and a photo of a man sitting next to him in his car. The father-of-two urged his wife to help and sent messages saying “911” and “Send Please!” She called the emergency number but she had to speak to several dispatchers. Eventually, she decided to go to the location herself. Her husband was found dead an hour later from a gunshot wound to the abdomen in a parking lot.
Law firm claims Colorado Springs authorities didn’t respond to hostage situation that turned deadly, incident remains under investigation https://t.co/eRF0k5fGv8— KKTV 11 News (@KKTV11News) June 5, 2023
The distraught widow said she saw her husband slumped inside the car alongside another man after which she fell to her knees and started screaming. “I shouldn’t have been the one there, the first person to respond,” she said. Campbell’s lawyer, Harry Daniels, said she wants to know why no one came to Qualin's side. “I can’t think of anything that could take higher precedence than a hostage situation, except maybe an active shooter,” she said.
"The Colorado Springs Police Department and EI Paso County can make all the excuses they want, but the facts are simple," says nationally renown civil rights attorney Harry Daniels who, along with Chantel Cherry-Lassiter represents Talija Campbell. "This was a hostage situation… pic.twitter.com/1LaPxVfq4E— Harry M. Daniels (@HarryMDJR) June 6, 2023
According to PEOPLE, a press release issued by Daniels stated that Talija called 911 “nearly an hour earlier to report that her husband had been taken hostage after receiving a desperate message from her husband reading, ‘911. Send Please!’ The message also included Campbell’s location and a picture of the man who had [allegedly] taken him hostage.” The release stated that this "was a hostage situation where Qualin Campbell was begging for his life, his wife called 911, the police were less than a mile away, but they never responded. Let’s be clear. If the police don’t respond to a hostage situation, none of us are safe,” the release reads.
“This was a hostage situation where Qualin Campbell was begging for his life, his wife called 911, the police were less than a mile away but they never responded.” https://t.co/MoayiT3kmj— The Denver Post (@denverpost) June 6, 2023
The Colorado Springs Police Department confirmed it found two deceased adult males on Friday at the location which was outside of a Taco Bell on South Nevada Avenue. Police spokesman Robert Tornabene said he couldn’t comment on the case because there was an “open and active criminal investigation” into the deaths. The man in the passenger's seat of the vehicle has been identified to be Colorado Springs resident, 44-year-old David Karels. Police say his death is being considered as suicide while Qualin's is a homicide per KOAA.
Police say this is still an active investigation and are looking for more witnesses or anyone with information to report a tip at (719) 444-7000.
Cover Image Source: YouTube | 11Alive