Utah: An Utah Nurse forcibly arrested for doing her job has agreed to a $500K settlement amidst the whole dispute of wrongful arrest. Alex Wubbels, a University Nurse was handcuffed by Officer Payne when she told him he needed patient consent or warrant before drawing blood. Consequently, he arrested her and put her in the police car for over 20 minutes.
No charges were filed against her. But, it left her feeling horrified and bullied. As a result, Wubbels and her lawyer Karra Porter released the body camera video they had obtained via a public records request. This footage garnered national audience attention and the debate over police use of force started.
What Really Happened: The Whole Story!
On July 26, a man in a pickup truck was trying to flee from the Utah Highway Patrol and collided head-on with the 43-year-old William Gray who was a full-time truck driver and a part-time reserve officer at the Rigby, Idaho Police Dept.
He was severely burned and injured when brought to Salt Lake Hospital and was in an unconscious state. When Detective Jeff Payne tried to draw blood from the patient, Nurse Wubbels intervened and told him he couldn’t do that because he lacked patient consent or any warrant required to draw blood as per hospital policy.
Lt. James Tracy who was the supervising officer suggested handcuffing the nurse and Payne did just that while she kept screaming she did nothing wrong. She was released 20 minutes later.
As a result of the incident, she felt traumatized and released the raw footage which angered the community over police actions. Payne has been suspended and Tracy has been demoted to the Officer rank after the investigation found them guilty.
The Police Needs to Police Themselves- Alex Wubbels
“The police have to police themselves. This is something I never would have expected to happen, but I’m also honored by the weight of it.” -she said.
After the decision came through, Wubbels stated how she never expected the decision but felt relieved by the justice. Both the officers have appealed for a change of decision and claim it was taken after the video gained negative publicity.
Payne’s attorney stated the patient holds a Commercial driver’s license which includes implied consent to blood draw of any person holding the CDL involved in a fatal accident. Tracy who was demoted is also appealing and stated he was never informed by his superiors about the hospital’s blood-draw policy.
A criminal investigation involving the FBI, UPD and Salt Lake County’s district Attorney continues.>