Wednesday, July 29, 2015


Deadly police misconduct is a tremendous problem in America right now, but here's a case of a public servant who isn't on a police force deciding that his right not to be "disrespected" outweighs another human being's life. To me, this reaction derives from the same mindset as "contempt of cop" brutality:
An Albuquerque Fire Department dispatcher has been reassigned after he allegedly refused to help a distraught woman asking for assistance on a 911 call as her friend was dying after being shot, fire officials said.

In audio released Tuesday, a dispatcher identified as Matthew Sanchez appears to get frustrated by a woman tending to Jaydon Chavez-Silver, a 17-year-old who was shot by a gunman who opened fire into a house where a party was being held at around 10 p.m. on June 26, authorities said.

Chavez-Silver was pronounced dead at a hospital, and there have been no arrests, Albuquerque police said Tuesday.

Sanchez asks several times whether the victim is breathing, and the caller says, "He's barely breathing. How many times do I have to f---ing tell you?"

Sanchez is heard responding, "OK, you know what, ma'am? You can deal with yourself, I'm not going to deal with this, OK?" The caller pleads, "No, my friend is dying! I …" and the line disconnects.
Here's a partial transcript:
Caller: I’m keeping him alive…

Dispatcher: Is he not breathing?

Caller: Barely. Take one more breath -- there you go, Jaydon. … Stay with me, stay with me, ok. Good job, Jaydon.

Dispatcher: Is he breathing?

Caller: He is barely breathing. How may times do I have to f**king tell you?

Dispatcher: Ok, you know what ma’am? You can deal with it yourself. I’m not going to deal with this, ok.

Caller: No! My friend is dying! …
And here's the audio:

I don't want to suggest that I see this as more important than the many cases of appalling behavior by "respect"-obsessed cops. The police cases are worse because cops always have the power of life and death over the people they detain.

But cops defend themselves by saying that they have to seize control of every situation in order not to be victims of violence themselves. Yes, that's a consideration in some cases of violent misconduct. In many cases, though, there's no obvious threat (an unarmed fleeing suspect shot in the back, a clearly unarmed teenage girl in a bikini slammed to the ground), and still they do it.

And now here's a 911 dispatcher who lashed out at a citizen even though he had no reason whatsoever to feel that he was experiencing any threat, expect to his precious dignity. Don't tell me that this isn't happening to cops. Don't tell me that every outrageously disproportionate reaction is the result of fear. Sorry, guys -- you serve the public. It's about service. It's not about your manhood.




Nefer said...

If you are a firefighter, police officer, health provider, etc., you *will* be dealing with people who are stressed out, angry, frightened, demanding, emotional, and irrational.

It is *your* responsibility to maintain a calm and professional demeanor during your interactions with the public (which by the way may help prevent escalation of the incident).

It is *not* the obligation of the public to feed your ego, placate you, appease you, or worry about hurting your feefees.

The dispatcher needs to find another line of work.

Victor said...

That dispatcher needs to find another line of work, after serving a long time in prison, for assisting in a negligent homicide.

That's my opinion.
It may not be right, but, it's MY opinion.
My being judgmental won't tune out to be a life & death situation for him...