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  1. #1
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    Default CT State Trooper Dispatcher suspended for innapropriate response to 911 call

    (Lisbon-WTNH, Mar. 21, 2005 6:00 PM) _ A state trooper is in trouble tonight for his response to an urgent call for help. The trooper was answering 911 calls from friends of a man who had just crashed his motorcycle.

    by News Channel 8's Sara Welch
    State police say effective today, Trooper Robert Peasley is suspended for 15 days without pay.

    The disciplinary actions follows months of an internal investigation into 911 calls from the scene of a motorcycle crash.

    "This is where all the panic and mayhem began."

    Along this road in Lisbon is where Jim Sawyer's son Justin lay dying.

    "And there was a pool of blood coming from his head."

    On August 17th, 2004, the 21-year-old crashed his motorcycle. His friends did what anyone would do in an emergency.

    "I called 911 right away."

    The call rang into the state police barracks in Montville.

    Instead of comfort, Russell Shepard was shocked by the trooper's response on the other end of the line.

    "State police 911.
    Yeah I want to report a street bike accident on Incinerator Road in Taftville. Someone crashed on their street bike.
    "Yeah... too bad."

    Too bad says the state police dispatcher who then hangs up.

    "I was shocked, thought I had the wrong number at first," says Russell Shepard.

    "So I picked up the phone and called 911," says Liz Niegel.

    Liz Niegel made the second frantic call.

    "State police 911.
    "Hi, I need to report a street bike accident what?
    "Hello?"
    "I need to report a street bike accident.
    "Was that the one on Incinerator Road?
    "Yeah. Help will get there. Shouldn't be playing games."

    "Shouldn't be playing games," says the trooper, who then hangs up.

    "Just the fact that my friend was there laying there helpless and it seemed like they didn't even care," says Niegel.

    "I am absolutely outraged every time I hear that 'too bad' and then click," says Jim Sawyer, Victim's Father.

    Jim Sawyer asks how someone who is supposed to care could act like he cared less.

    "Anybody who could sit there on a switch board answering 911 calls knowing full well everything he says his being monitored and turn around and make the rude commentary that he did," says Sawyer. "No one deserves to be spoken to that way."

    It wasn't until the third emergency call that a female dispatcher assessed the situation.

    "How bad are the injuries?"
    "He's not moving, he's bleeding from his ear.
    "Is he breathing?.
    "Yes, he is breathing."
    "Tell people not to touch him. I will send an ambulance out there ok?"

    Sawyer expected that response from the first call.

    "I only know I would have felt a whole lot more comfortable if I had heard people on the other end of the line of that 911 call with some heart and caring," says Sawyer.

    "He was rude and it was just an outrageous way to answer an emergency phone call."

    A week after those calls, Justin Sawyer died from a severe head injury.

    "I can't even begin to comment on that, he was my life," says Sawyer.

    For his father, the troopers response that August evening will haunt him forever.

    "It will play over and over and over in my mind for the rest of my life," says Sawyer. "What I want to see is this officer removed from his position, he's not fit to wear the uniform, that's what I think."

    Jim Sawyer wants to make sure no one in an emergency situation calls 911 and gets this kind of response.

    Tonight state police tell us that Trooper Robert Peasley's comments were unprofessional and inappropriate.

    The agency apologizes if the actions added to the family's pain.

    It also found that the behavior did not impact response time.

    Trooper Peasley has 18 years with the state police and the department says he has been a stellar trooper with a long and unblemished career.

    Meanwhile, the state police union tells us Trooper Peasley is remorseful for his comments but the union says the discipline is inappropriate and harsh.

    The family of Justin Sawyer says a 15 day suspension isn't tough enough.


  2. #2
    Forum Member firenresq77's Avatar
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    Wow........
    The comments made by me are my opinions only. They DO NOT reflect the opinions of my employer(s). If you have an issue with something I may say, take it up with me, either by posting in the forums, emailing me through my profile, or PMing me through my profile.
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    Forum Member HeavyRescueTech's Avatar
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    yeah, as a former dispatcher, EMT, firefighter, and human being, I can't imagine anyone doing something like that. 15 days sounds very light.
    If my basic HazMat training has taught me nothing else, it's that if you see a glowing green monkey running away from something, follow that monkey!

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  4. #4
    Early Adopter cozmosis's Avatar
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    Default Re: CT State Trooper Dispatcher suspended for innapropriate response to 911 call

    Originally posted by shvfr4
    Meanwhile, the state police union tells us Trooper Peasley is remorseful for his comments but the union says the discipline is inappropriate and harsh.
    The only thing "inappropriate and harsh" is to think this trooper doesn't deserve a punishment that fits his wrongdoings. As an emergency services professional, I think the actions of this trooper actually merit greater punishment than he has received. This incident was literally a matter of life and death. He chose to treat the citizens he's sworn to protect with disrespect. Shameful.

  5. #5
    MembersZone Subscriber Engine58's Avatar
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    15 days? Should be fired!!
    Andrew
    Firefighter/EMT
    New Jersey

  6. #6
    MembersZone Subscriber dmleblanc's Avatar
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    I agree...this guy should be canned...makes you wonder how he handles the rest of his business....


    "Yeah. Help will get there. Shouldn't be playing games.
    Sounds to me like maybe he's dealt with a few "outlaw" bikers in his time (I'm assuming from the victim's age that this was not a Harley type biker but a crotch-rocket type rider). No excuse, though. We've all seen some of the stunts these young riders pull (a mixture of too much bike and too little maturity) and sooner or later it catches up with them. But that doesn't relieve the trooper, or any of us for that matter, of our duty to take care of them when something happens.
    Chief Dwayne LeBlanc
    Paincourtville Volunteer Fire Department
    Paincourtville, LA

    "I have a dream. It's not a big dream, it's just a little dream. My dream — and I hope you don't find this too crazy — is that I would like the people of this community to feel that if, God forbid, there were a fire, calling the fire department would actually be a wise thing to do. You can't have people, if their houses are burning down, saying, 'Whatever you do, don't call the fire department!' That would be bad."
    — C.D. Bales, "Roxanne"

  7. #7
    MembersZone Subscriber CFD Hazards's Avatar
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    C'mon, how can you guys say that about an elite "Trooper". They are told since they are just a gleem in the Commanders eyes that they are the best police officers in the world. I have never met one without a gigantic, elitest ego. This guy is a disgrace and should be fired. What would happen to a fire dispatcher if a call was received from a mother screaming that Johnny was playing with a lighter and set the room on fire and that dispatchers response was to tell her "too bad, tell junior not to play with matches" and hang up. My guess, he would be fired within 10 minutes.

  8. #8
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    He will never be fired.

    I just heard this tape on the radio. I have a question for the CT guys. Is there something that happened before the call that would have lead him to believe that the call was bogus? It's hard for me to believe that an expereinced LEO would just, out of the blue, assume a call reporting an MVA w/injuries was bogus.

    I'm not defending him, just trying to find the whole story.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Dalmatian90's Avatar
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    Not that it matters, the Montville barracks wouldn't be the primary 911 answering point for Lisbon. Had to be an issue which cell tower they hit, and the news yesterday was even by the time of this unfortunate incident the 911 answering point that covered the area already had the call and was dispatching it. (It's the same center my department is under).

    15 Days sure sounds appropriate to me if there's no other disciplinary issues over 18 years, which is what it sounds like from the press reports. People have bad nights, and this wasn't a young chicken on probation.

    18 years BTW is pretty senior -- most Troopers retire after 20 years. Very rare to see them beyond 25 unless they're high ranking or really, really love the job.
    IACOJ Canine Officer
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  10. #10
    Senior Member Dalmatian90's Avatar
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    Is there something that happened before the call that would have lead him to believe that the call was bogus?

    Actually George, going back a re-reading the article something just clicked --

    The address was "Incinerator Road" -- that's essentially a private road that goes to a trash-to-energy plant. It's not a through road, it's not a residential road.

    So the "Shouldn't have been playing games" makes a lot of sense -- you tell me there's been an accident on an industrial road and it's not shift change, doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out people where screwing around racing and showboating.

    The other news article I had seen also said they had been taking other calls on this or a nearby accident as well, so these weren't the first calls they had taken either.

    Doesn't excuse the behavior, but it helps paint the full picture.
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  11. #11
    Forum Member fireguy919's Avatar
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    doesn't matter if he had 20 bs call. he should of acted like a trooper. one takes one missed call like this to mess up his career. just goes to show you never know what it's going to be on the other end of the phone.

  12. #12
    Forum Member ThNozzleman's Avatar
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    This worthless SOB should be fired immediately. I heard the recordings on the news this morning. Typical attitude from a jerk-*** cop. Disgusting.
    Last edited by ThNozzleman; 03-23-2005 at 09:17 AM.

  13. #13
    Forum Member Bones42's Avatar
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    Meanwhile, the state police union tells us Trooper Peasley is remorseful for his comments but the union says the discipline is inappropriate and harsh.
    I don't agree with the Union on this.

    On a side note, is it normal for an 18 year veteran trooper which is "a stellar trooper with a long and unblemished career" to be sitting answering the phones? I would think this would be the guy you'd want out on the roads.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

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    Forum Member ThNozzleman's Avatar
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    I would think this would be the guy you'd want out on the roads.
    Sure...then he could dole out his arrogant, judgemental nonsense in person. What a zero.

  15. #15
    Forum Member nmfire's Avatar
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    I read the story and was like "WTF kind of idiot would do that? It couldn't actually have happenend like that."

    Then I hear the recording on the news. That's the kind of thing you mumble to yourself after you hang up, NOT while your on the phone. Obviously somoene was having a bad day....
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

  16. #16
    Forum Member Bones42's Avatar
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    Originally posted by ThNozzleman

    arrogant, judgemental nonsense
    Ya know Noz, you're jumping to an awful lot of conclusions with only knowing about 30 seconds of this guys 18 year career. I know more about you from reading most of your posts on here than you do about this trooper through a <30 second clip and still couldn't/wouldn't judge whether you are a good/bad/arrogant firefighter.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

  17. #17
    Sr. Information Officer NJFFSA16's Avatar
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    Originally posted by GeorgeWendtCFI
    He will never be fired.

    I just heard this tape on the radio. I have a question for the CT guys. Is there something that happened before the call that would have lead him to believe that the call was bogus? It's hard for me to believe that an expereinced LEO would just, out of the blue, assume a call reporting an MVA w/injuries was bogus.

    I'm not defending him, just trying to find the whole story.
    I also heard the 911 tapes. I was involved in the story which aired on "Good Morning America." There is something missing from this equation...as George has noted. I get the distinct impression that a previous call, or series of calls made to this dispatch center were taken as prank phone calls. That information however....has NOT surfaced. I am convinced that the cavalier attitude exhibited by this officer...was the result of something that occurred prior to him hanging up on the next 911 caller.
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  18. #18
    Forum Member ThNozzleman's Avatar
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    Ya know Noz, you're jumping to an awful lot of conclusions with only knowing about 30 seconds of this guys 18 year career.
    "Jumping to an awful lot of conclusions?" Hardly. I heard the tapes with my own ears. This guy is a disgrace, regardless of how long he's been serving. Who is he to judge and condemn someone who is dying on the side of the road?? And I can't help but feel that he probably handles all situations he with the same tact.
    I only made one conclusion: this guy is an *** who should be terminated immediately.

  19. #19
    Forum Member ThNozzleman's Avatar
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    I am convinced that the cavalier attitude exhibited by this officer...was the result of something that occurred prior to him hanging up on the next 911 caller.
    Yep...somewhere in his career, he became an unprofessional jerk.

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    Originally posted by fireguy919
    doesn't matter if he had 20 bs call.
    AMEN! Just because we go on BS calls all day doesn't give us the right to act unprofessionally or even worse... not respond. The least that he could have done is let the caller know that the accident had already been reported and that help was on the way... that is, if help actually WAS on it's way!

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