Nurse wrongfully arrested after refusing to give police officer blood sample of patient

Written & published August 31, 2017 by
Nurse Alex Wubbels arrested
Police Officer Jeff Payne is seen shoving Nurse Alex Wubbels outside the hospital to be handcuffed.

SALT LAKE CITY, UT — Newly released video shows University of Utah Hospital Nurse Alex Wubbels arrested for simply doing her job on July 26.

Earlier that day, a suspect was running from police and crashed into a semi truck head-on, dying instantly. The semi driver was admitted to the hospital for critical burn injuries as the impact caused a massive explosion that engulfed his cab in flames.

Salt Lake City police officer Jeff Payne arrived at the hospital and requested a blood sample from the victim, who was unconscious and being treated by Wubbels. Since hospital policy mandates police can only receive blood samples from a patient who consents, is under arrest or there is a warrant to permit the taking of a blood sample, Wubbels refused since none of these permutations existed.

This policy is one that the Salt Lake City Police had themselves agreed to.

Alex Wubbels with policy
For good measure, Wubbels even printed off the policy for officers to review.

Under the threat of arrest for "interfering with an investigation," Wubbels stated she was simply doing her job in refusing to give the officer the victim's blood. Having her supervisor on the phone to support her and the hospital's position in front of the officer, Officer Payne did not give up and continued threatening to take Wubbels to jail.

See the complete body cam footage of the interaction here.

"Why are you blaming the messenger, sir?" the supervisor asked over the phone held by Wubbels on speaker.

"She's the one who's told me no," the officer replied.

"Yeah, but sir, you're making a huge mistake right now because you're threatening a nurse."

Frustrated by the resistance, Officer Payne then tried taking the phone from Wubbel's hands but she instinctively backed up.

"No, we're done! You're under arrest, we're going!" Officer Payne shouted as Wubbels continued to back up, terrified. "We're done. WE'RE DONE!"

Finally held captive by the officer's grasp, Wubbels was hauled out of the hospital screaming.

"Stop! Help me, please!" You're assaulting me, stop, stop! I've done nothing wrong."

Hospital staff tried to prevent the officer from continuing, saying the whole situation was unnecessary.

"She's under arrest," Officer Payne stressed as he put Wubbels in handcuffs.

"For doing her job?" hospital workers questioned.

Alex Wubbels handcuffed

At this point, Wubbels was dragged to the back of a Salt Lake City police car.

"Please, sir, you're hurting me!" she screamed.

Although there was a large show of force from the Salt Lake City Police Department, several University of Utah Police were seen standing around doing nothing.

Wubbels was eventually taken out of handcuffs and released from the scene as top hospital personnel rebuked the officer's decision to arrest her.

After video of the incident surfaced to spark public outcry, the Salt Lake City Police Department said an internal affairs investigation is ongoing. The officer has not yet been fired or criminally charged nor is it clear as to what punishment he will receive pending the outcome of the investigation. Another officer of the Salt Lake City Police could also face punishment related to the incident.

Unwilling to sue, Wubbels stated she just wants relations between law enforcement and medical providers to improve and believes showing video of the ordeal will really demonstrate ways on how the Salt Lake City Police can better themselves.

"If this could happen to me, it could happen to anyone," she told the media.

The Salt Lake City mayor and police chief apologized to Wubbels but Officer Payne so far has not...

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