Aspiring medical doctor left brain-dead after allegedly being pushed into lake by friend

Francis Akhalbey May 06, 2024
Christopher “Chris” Gilbert was allegedly pushed into a lake -- Photo Credit: KSLA

The family of an aspiring medical doctor is seeking justice after he was left brain-dead as a result of being allegedly pushed into a lake and being underwater for nearly 10 minutes. Per KSLA, the near-fatal incident occurred at Lake D’Arbonne in Farmerville on April 14.

Christopher “Chris” Gilbert was hanging out with a group of friends at a lakefront restaurant in Farmerville when he was allegedly pushed into the lake. “A friend of his called and she was hysterical crying. She told me that Chris has fell into the lake and he had been underwater for 10 minutes or so,” Gilbert’s mother, Yolanda George, said.

“The doctor called us in and told me that at that time, he was brain dead and the rest of his organs were starting to fail. That we had 72 hours on the ECMO machine. It’s sort of like dialysis for the lungs and they had to put him on a ventilator.”

George also said she was left “devastated” when she saw her son at the hospital. “I felt like my life had ended in that moment,” she recalled. “My son is aspiring to be a medical doctor, my son is going to be a medical doctor. He got his masters last year in biological science. He’s preparing for medical school so for this to have happened to him… I was just devastated.”

The attorney for Gilbert’s family, Claudia Payne, told KSLA that the group of friends he was with had initially informed police that he fell into a lake. A subsequent investigation, however, established a female friend in the group allegedly pushed Gilbert.

“In the legal field, we characterize things the way we see fit. Of course, they are saying horseplay. We are saying that it was a criminal intentional push into the lake.”

It could also not be established why Gilbert was under the water for nearly ten minutes. Payne also said a video showed one of Gilbert’s friends initially attempting to get into the water before a customer at another restaurant eventually rescued Gilbert.

Gilbert’s medical condition has since improved. He is unable to talk, though he can respond cognitively. “The amount of work that the machines are doing on his behalf is constant. His lungs are said to be at 20%. His status doesn’t really get better, it’s just different,” Payne said.

Gilbert’s family said they want the restaurant owner and whoever pushed him into the lake to be held accountable. “Why would you push my son in the lake knowing couldn’t swim?” George questioned.

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: May 6, 2024


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