Utah Hospital Bars Police From Patient-Care Areas
Tue Sep 5, 2017 7:34pm

Utah Hospital Bars Police From Patient-Care Areas After Nurse’s Arrest

Says it all: “I’m not here to police the police,” she said in an interview on Monday on “Today.”
“The police need to do that if they’re going to regain any kind of trust by me or, I think, the public.”

Police officers will be barred from patient-care areas at a hospital in Utah that drew widespread notice for an officer’s arrest of a nurse, hospital officials said this week.

The new policy, announced at a news conference on Monday, was put into effect soon after a Salt Lake City police officer arrested Alex Wubbels, who on July 26 refused to allow an officer to take a blood sample from an unconscious patient at University of Utah Hospital. Video footage of the encounter surfaced last week, leading to fierce condemnation of the police tactics, including a rally in Salt Lake City on Saturday.

In the videos, two of which were recorded by police body cameras, Ms. Wubbels can be seen explaining to the officer that she could not allow blood to be drawn from a patient unless he is under arrest, there is a warrant for his arrest or he has consented to having his blood drawn. The officer, Jeff L. Payne, handcuffed her in response, accusing her of impeding an investigation.

Ms. Wubbels was not charged with any crimes. Mr. Payne and an unnamed officer were put on administrative leave as the department conducts a criminal investigation into the episode.

Nurses at the hospital will no longer deal directly with law enforcement officers, according to the new policy. Instead, officers will check in at the front desk and will interact with a supervisor who is trained in law and hospital policy, said Margaret Pearce, the chief nursing officer at the University of Utah hospital system.

The change in policy will allow nurses to focus on caring for patients, Ms. Pearce said.

“If there is a discussion or an issue, it needs to occur outside the patient care environment,” she said.

The patient, identified as William Gray, was a truck driver and reserve police officer for the Rigby Police Department in Idaho. He was not suspected of wrongdoing; a driver fleeing the police crashed into Mr. Gray’s truck, severely injuring Mr. Gray and killing himself.

In a statement on Facebook, the police in Rigby sided with Ms. Wubbels in her confrontation with Mr. Payne.

“The Rigby Police Department would like to thank the nurse involved and hospital staff for standing firm, and protecting Officer Gray’s rights as a patient and victim,” the statement read. “Protecting the rights of others is truly a heroic act.”

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that officers must have a warrant to draw blood in drunken-driving cases. In a statement last week, Mike Brown, the Salt Lake City police chief, said the department would “do what is necessary to fully investigate the issue, uphold the integrity of the Salt Lake City Police Department, and strengthen the trust with our community.”

Ms. Wubbels has said in interviews that she hoped the episode would create a productive discussion.

“I’m not here to police the police,” she said in an interview on Monday on “Today.” “The police need to do that if they’re going to regain any kind of trust by me or, I think, the public.”®ion=top-news&WT.nav=top-news

  • ‘This is crazy,’ sobs Utah hospital nurse as cop roughs her up, arrests her for doing her job... more
    • Utah Hospital Bars Police From Patient-Care Areas — Merlin, Tue Sep 5 7:34pm
    • allow her to take his blood. She's right, without a warrant, him being under arrest, or his consent, it would be assault for her to touch the man, regardless of the officer wanting her to just do it. ... more
      • One detail you missed. Sprout, Sun Sep 3 9:57am
        No one was asking her to do it. The officer is a phlebotomist and would do it himself. One could maybe make the case that be allowing it would make her an accessory, but per the articles it would not ... more
        • law just because he's a cop. Plus, the hospital does NOT have to allow someone claiming to be a phlebotomist to use their equipment or facility simply because of their insurance. If a doctor without... more
          • The cops were doing an end run to protect their asses.PH👁👁EY, Sun Sep 10 11:27pm
            They were chasing some alledged criminal. The criminal plowed headfirst into this guys truck. Dead criminal and seriously injured truck driver. My guess is the cops wanted to see if the truck driver... more
          • HER being requested or required to draw the blood. IMO this is one of the common problems of many different articles covering a situation where some articles cover some aspects and other articles... more
        • To allow blood to be drawn from a patient without their consent unless you have a warrant. It doesn't matter who is doing it.
          • The hospital policy allows blood to be drawn under any one of THREE conditions. Having a warrant is only one of them. The officer was TRYING to apply one of the other two, (implied consent), but with ... more
          • a law just about everywhere that drawing blood from a patient without consent is considered assault, and no nurse will even force an 8 year old who says NO to let her take blood. It isn't done and... more
            • to force anyone to accept anything. IMO there are LOTS of examples of cases where medical professionals HAVE cooperated with police to force searches of various types ACTIVELY against the wishes of... more
          • ...according to reporting anyway, is cover for the officer. Certainly ignorance of the law is no excuse, but if his lieutenant said he had the authority, is that a defense? I don't know.
            • Obeying orders is not a legal defenseSprout, Mon Sep 4 4:51pm
              from a strictly legal standpoint. However, would a JURY be swayed by it? Probably. Would a DA (who is likely looking for ANY excuse to let the officer off the hook) be willing to accept it as an... more
            • No, it isn't Jeeves, Sun Sep 3 8:15pm
              A police lieutenant is not equal to a judge
              • I agree. However...HeavyHemi, Sun Sep 3 8:28pm
                purely as an thought exercise, why isn't relying upon the authority and knowledge of your superior a defense or at least, a mitigating factor? This is separate from his other actions regarding the... more
                • globally that just obeying orders is not a defense. The military has the same concept. Do you not remember being trained as to how to handle unlawful orders?
                  • Cut him some slack.PH👁👁EY, Sun Sep 10 11:32pm
                    It's been awfully smokey up in Oregon what with all those pot farms catching on fire.
                  • How strange...HeavyHemi, Tue Sep 5 4:08pm
                    Passive aggressive as per usual. It also recognized the mitigating factor of following the orders of a superior. I'm sorry you have such a difficult time processing anything even remotely outside on... more
                    • Maybe in your day...Sprout, Tue Sep 5 4:29pm
                      Our training on how to handle unlawful orders quite clearly said that following orders was in NO WAY an excuse or a mitigating factor... AGAIN, as I said, a JURY might be more sympathetic, but the... more
                      • You're getting upset because?HeavyHemi, Tue Sep 5 4:48pm
                        And again, that you try to limit the discussion to ONLY what you consider is just another example of your limitations. We're not discussing crimes against humanity or war crimes kid. I realize that... more
                        • Thanks for so conclusively provingSprout, Tue Sep 5 6:33pm
                          my point.
                          • 'conclusively proving your point'? You either read my post and decided you had no argument or, you didn't read my post and just pitched a fit.
                            • If you read your own post you wouldSprout, Wed Sep 6 8:49am
                              realize that it conclusively supports the position I have been taking all along. But, as usual, you are done.
                              • Actually, NO, it proves you're mistaken.Sia☺giah, Sun Sep 10 11:44pm
                              • Clearly you think so.HeavyHemi, Wed Sep 6 9:12am
                                Clearly you can read where your claim of absolutely no defense is objectively false. The post proves you are fundamentally dishonest. It sure is alarming how Trump Troopers have adopted the style of... more
                                • Take Hawaii for example. Hawaii has only three species of native Lepidoptera- two butterflies and one moth. Hawaii has only three species of native orchid, and nothing to write home about. Colorado's ... more
                                  • In what way does this conflict withSprout, Wed Sep 6 11:28am
                                    Sprout His post in your opinion, with respect to the case we have been discussing? Obeying orders is not a legal defense Mon Sep 4, 2017 4:51pm from a strictly legal standpoint.... more
                                    • said could be used. I even pinpointed your failure to address them in your tantrum. Your assertion there is never a legal defense is false. I cited them. STOP LYING.
                                      • And to FURTHER clarify for you...Sprout, Wed Sep 6 12:53pm
                                        The officer was presented ON THE SCENE with the documents showing he had no authority to force the blood draw. So, he cannot claim ignorance. I would think it wasn't that hard and didn't believe you... more
                                        • Once again, you try to change the argument to your own tiny specific example instead of the actual discussion. I cited examples using your standard provided exceptions. You are in fact wrong.
                                        • I described him as a student differently. Less politically correct. I believe I wrote a sneaky little runt. Some things don't change. Same with defenses. When JP was sixteen, he looked twelve, and... more
                                          • Hahaha😀. I have to guffaw.PH👁👁EY (JP), Sun Sep 10 11:39pm
                                            That describes me to a "T." Though I was never a runt. I was so immature my elementary school held me back a year in third grade. I did not have pubic hair until 17. And today at 72 I look 60.... more
                                          • I was asked a question about a LEGAL defense of "obeying orders", and addressed it utilizing the example of the Nuremburg trials clearly showing that obeying orders to commit violations was not... more
                                            • Your argument is sound.PH💉💉EY, Sun Sep 10 11:44pm
                                              So why is it so difficult for another to grasp the simplicity of your points?
                                            • I asked the question. You don't get to change it to what YOU decide. I cited examples where in theory a defense exists. You asserted it never does. You are in fact wrong and your concession they DO... more
                                              • Not so fast:PH🗣🗣EY, Sun Sep 10 11:48pm
                                                Your manner of discussion is more akin to a bum's rush ( or is it bum rush.). You cannot just dismiss a debator with the wave of an imperial finger wag or flippant hand gesture. The buzzer has... more
                                                • Contrarian, I have asked you nicely.HeavyHemi, Mon Sep 11 12:56am
                                                  Stop it now.
                                                  • Stop what?PH😵😵EY, Mon Sep 11 7:41pm
                                                    You mystify me. I offer an opinion. It's not a particularly nice opinion. But I felt you were being haughty. Sorry if you are offended. Forgive me.
                                                  • LOL....Sprout, Mon Sep 11 8:43am
                                                    And what will you do if he doesn't? Wave your finger imperiously again? Or perhaps you will taunt someone as second time... LOL Whiner.
                                                    • Are you 12?HeavyHemi, Tue Sep 12 3:35am
                                                      You posted your tantrum because you're upset that you you keep losing simple arguments. Grow up kid.
                                      • LOL... aparently you didn't read themSprout, Wed Sep 6 12:51pm
                                        because they clearly did not apply in this case. Or were you told to obey unlawful orders?
                • He is a policemanJeeves, Sun Sep 3 8:45pm
                  He is expected to have been trained in legal procedures, requirements, etc. ESPECIALLY if he is a trained phlebotomist, he should know the legalities involved ,
                  • Can hear police communicationsPikes, Mon Sep 4 1:58pm
                    in the video, so JP was talking with people at the hospital and his department. Some sounds like radio communication, but it's hard to hear exactly what. When I read the article as saw the name, I... more
    • Who wants to bet that the "internal affairs" investigation comes up with some white washed conclusion about a need for more training and does little more than slap the wrist of the sergeant involved? ... more
      • Hit.Nail.HeadMerlin, Fri Sep 1 8:35am
        The good cops who do their jobs, and go above and beyond, are the ones who have to ultimately pay the price for the bad apples in their barrel.
        • OMG!Pikes, Sat Sep 2 4:35am
          I saw the story today, and when I read the cop's name- chills! I had a student by that name for a year, in roughly the same region. Outside Salt Lake, that whole region is sparsely populated with... more
          • It's A Small Small World!Merlin, Sat Sep 2 10:47am
            And little droogies grow up to be big droogies. ;-) There was me, that is Alex, and my three droogs, that is Pete, Georgie, and Dim, and we sat in the Korova Milkbar trying to make up our rassoodocks ... more
            • More Pikes, Sat Sep 2 11:19am
              The boy was one of three suspected in starting the 1987 fire on Battlement Mesa After the fire, he and his family moved. No one was arrested because there... more
              • A Clockwork OrangeSia☺giah, Sun Sep 3 1:25am
                • Oh yeah!Pikes, Sun Sep 3 10:23am
                  I didn't connect it with that. My mind was on another planet, which is typical! Plus I never "got into" A Clockwork Orange. At the time I was really steeped in classical music, and paid little... more
                    • My ignorance. Pikes, Sun Sep 3 5:52pm
                      I really never saw much of, or got into A Clockwork Orange. It's one of those things I just didn't make time for. Mistake? Absolutely. I know it grabbed attention of many people- but I really was in... more
              • He had his droogies with him in this case.Merlin, Sat Sep 2 1:04pm
                There were a number of fellow officers at the scene who carefully record what happened but did not call their sergeant or lieutenant of whoever to tell him to stand down until one of the other... more