A nurse at the University hospital in SLC released police body camera footage, which not only annotates the incident that she had with SLC police detective Jeff Payne, but she says also brings attention to a known problem that nurses have with police in the area, which is police bullying nurses to give them evidence which police want (as per this video) outside of the constitution and legal limits.
In the video you can hear nurse Alex Wubbles who is a former Olympian athlete as well, telling the officer blood cannot be taken from an unconscious patient unless the patient is under arrest, unless there is a warrant allowing the draw or unless the patient consents. The detective acknowledges in the footage that none of those requirements is in place, but he insists that he has the authority to obtain the draw, according to the footage.
Detective Payne then threatens the nurse. “I either go away with blood in vials or body in tow,” Payne says.
After Wubbels consults with several hospital officials and repeats the policy, Payne tells her she is under arrest and grabs her, pulling her arms behind her back and handcuffing her. The footage shows the detective dragging Wubbels out of the hospital and putting her inside a patrol car as she screams, “Help! Help! Somebody help me! Stop! Stop! I did nothing wrong!”
As he stands in the hospital parking lot after the arrest, Payne says to another officer that he wonders how this event will affect an off-duty job transporting patients for an ambulance company.
“I’ll bring them all the transients and take good patients elsewhere,” Payne says.
Tracy said in his report that he spoke on the phone with Wubbels and told her he believed that they had implied consent to get the sample, but she cut him off and said she would not allow the draw without a warrant. He then went to the hospital and tried to tell the nurse why she was in custody, but “she appeared to not want to hear my explanation,” Tracy wrote.
Porter, however, said “implied consent” has not been the law in Utah since 2007, and theU.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2016 that the Constitution permits warrantless breath tests in drunken-driving arrests, but not warrantless blood tests. She stressed that the patient was always considered the victim in the case and never was suspected of wrongdoing.
This is a case of a Detective not getting his way, and then throwing a temper tantrum. While this is not unique, as it seems officers often act like babies when they realize their goals can not be met because of the confines of the constitution. However to assault this woman, who is a respectable citizen, a former Olympian athlete and a nurse who is simply sticking to the hospital policy which ensures that they maintain the constitutional rights of their patients while their patients are under their care is complete lawlessness.
To see that the officer is still on active duty, and his only consequence is that he has been removed from the blood draw team.
The SLPD and the SLC Mayor Jackie Biskupski held a press conference, and apologized dozens of times, and noted two pending investigations in to this incident, one internal and one which is being conducted by a citizens group. During the press conference they were asked several times why the officer involved in the assault was still on active duty.
It is amazing that the police can commit crimes and are “innocent until proven guilty” but when a citizen does anything along these same lines they end up in jail, with bond due, and hefty legal fees to deal with. The police carry on as if nothing has changed in their lives. Imagine what would happen if a non-police officer would have done anything similar to this in this scenario or any other scenario. The charges would be felony assault and kidnapping!
She tells the Salt Lake tribune “I can’t sit on this video and not attempt to speak out both to re-educate and inform,” she said. Police agencies “need to be having conversations about what is appropriate intervention.”
Good for her!
We will update this as soon as we get more information, as I have requested some FOIA information from the PD such as the police report.
I also order a report on the career history of Jeff Payne with the SLC PD.
These are some excerpts from Jeff Payne’s body camera.