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Utah police officer fired after investigation into nurse's arrest

Utah police officer fired after investigation into nurse's arrest

A Utah police officer was sacked Tuesday after being seen on video roughly handcuffing a nurse because she refused to allow a blood draw in an incident that became a flashpoint in the national conversation about use of force.

In the police video of the incident, Detective Jeff Payne handcuffed Wubbels and placed her in a police auto when she refused to allow officers to obtain a blood sample from a crash victim at the hospital without a warrant. She wasn't charged, but in the video depicting her arrest, she appears visibly shaken, screaming for help. He was demoted two ranks from lieutenant to the rank of police officer.

'Without the body camera footage, it would have been a she-said, they-said, ' Porter said. His lawyer, Ed Brass, couldn't immediately be reached. In the video, Ms. Wubbels says hospital policy won't permit the blood draw unless the patient has provided consent, is under arrest or the police have a warrant. They questioned why the police department took action against Payne only after the bodycam footage was released to the public. "Alex feels very strongly that her story would have never been told if it weren't for the body camera footage".

Payne had previously been disciplined in 2013 after internal-affairs investigators confirmed that he sexually harassed a female co-worker in a "persistent and severe" way.

Brown said while he recognized Payne has served the department for 27 years, his service "is outweighed by the glaring absence of sound professional judgment and extremely discourteous, disrespectful, inappropriate, unreasonable and unwarranted behavior you displayed in this incident". On October 4 the DA's office published a letter, stating that it would not be filing charges against the Salt Lake City Police Department Officer that killed him.

"We are disappointed with the decision and will be filing an appeal this week".

Furthermore, Brown said Tracy's actions have caused "substantial damage" to the relationship the police department has with local hospitals, nurses and other health care officials that "will take considerable time and resources to rebuild".

How did the nurse and her attorney respond?

"This is insane", she said as she was led away. "I don't get it", she said.

Porter said she was still evaluating how she felt about Tracy's punishment.

The next step for Wubbels will be deciding whether to file a civil lawsuit.

Wubbels and her attorney Karra Porter say they went public with the footage of the arrest because they believed police were not taking the matter seriously enough.

"The decision... is in keeping with the high level of accountability we owe the people of Salt Lake City", Mayor Jackie Biskupski explained, according to CNN. "And I think the council has some work to do around that", he said.

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