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Utah nurse arrested after refusing cop to take blood from unconscious patient

02 September 2017

The nurse, Alex Wubbels, is seen talking with officers in the University of Utah Hospital when one of them appears to grab for her phone.

Nurse Wubbels, who was on duty when Payne sought access to the patient, informed him that policy prohibits him from taking blood from an unconscious patient unless he has a warrant, the patient is under arrest or the patient has given consent.

The dispute ended with Payne telling the nurse she was under arrest and physically moving her out of the hospital while she screamed, "Help!"

A clearly terrified Wubbels screams "help me" and "you're assaulting me" and "this is crazy" as the detective forces her into an unmarked auto.

According to the Deseret News, the incident occurred July 26 when Salt Lake police detective Jeff Payne hustled nurse Alex Wubbels out of University Hospital's Burn Unit over the protests of her fellow employees.

Detective Payne was sent to collect blood from the patient and check for illicit substances, reports the Salt Lake Tribune. The driver of the fleeing auto was killed. Payne can be heard threatening to arrest her and becomes impatient.

In the video, Wubbels can be seen explaining that she was not authorized to hand over the blood because the truck driver was unconscious and unable to give consent. "What is happening?" Wubbels says through tears as the detective straps her into the front seat of his auto. She was eventually released, and no charges were filed against her.

The Salt Lake City Police Department has viewed the body camera video and started an internal affairs investigation into the arresting officer.

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Payne said he needed the victim's blood sample for an investigation, in a body camera video released during a press conference on Thursday. I want to see people do the right thing first and I want to see this be a civil discourse.

The chief of police in Salt Lake City called the video "very alarming", according to the Deseret News.

The truck driver was comatose and sedated when he arrived at the hospital.

"I just feel betrayed, I feel angry ..."

Charge Nurse Alexandra Wubbels said the request for blood isn't allowed under the policy the hospital established with law enforcement. The only job I have is to keep my patient safe.

He said that the department "took steps to ensure this will never happen again", including changing its blood draw policy. Payne was suspended from active duty pending an internal investigation. She said she had watched the video footage several times but said "it hurts to relive it", reported the Salt Lake Tribune.

Mayor Jackie Biskupski says it's a troubling setback to efforts to train officers to de-escalate situations rather than use force.

Utah nurse arrested after refusing cop to take blood from unconscious patient