As Carol Wolf struggled to pump life back into her 30-year-old son's chest, hoping Charlie Yaw could hold on just a little longer until paramedics arrived, at least three neighbors and the man's cousin frantically dialed 911.
But they said no one answered, laying blame on Broward County's malfunctioning 911 system. After more than an hour, those waiting said, police found Yaw's unresponsive body inside his Davie apartment.
"I was giving him compressions and we heard his heart beat," Wolf told Local 10 News. "If they wouldn't have taken so long to get here, he would probably still be alive."
Multiple calls to phone numbers linked to Wolf were not returned as of Friday evening.
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Davie Police Sgt. Mark Leon said Yaw died of natural causes.
"There are no suspicious circumstances being investigated," Leon wrote in a statement to media. He did not respond to follow-up questions sent by a Herald reporter.
Broward County's three dispatch centers suffered a telephone outage on Friday. Calls received were going to an "abandoned" call state, and call takers "made attempts" to return the calls, the county said in a press release.
The county was notified of the problem at 12 p.m., and it was resolved by 1 p.m.
Alphonso Jefferson, the assistant Broward County administrator overseeing regional communications, could not be immediately reached for comment Friday evening. Reached earlier in the day for a separate article, he said it was unknown how many calls had been missed.
Broward's communications system has been the subject of heightened criticism following the Feb. 14 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Radio difficulties hindered the response from Broward Sheriff's deputies, who resorted to using hand signals on the scene.
The system, contracted by Broward County, not BSO, is undergoing a $59.5 million upgrade expected to be completed in 2019.
"We did not have confidence — still do not have confidence — in the system that Broward County put together. ... Our communication dispatch people attempted to call the Broward Sheriff’s Department, attempted to communicate with them, to no avail," Coral Springs Mayor Walter "Skip" Campbell told the state’s Parkland shooting commission Tuesday.
In a press release Friday, the county said that "at no time were there impacts to the radio system or computer-aided dispatch system."
"County staff and the 911 system vendor, West Safety Services, immediately began working on the issue and it was revealed that calls received were going into an 'abandoned' call state," the statement says. "While technicians worked to resolve the issue, call takers made attempts to return the calls from the abandoned call list."