Nurse refuses blood test on unconscious patient; gets cuffed

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - A Utah police officer's body camera video shows a hospital nurse being handcuffed after refusing to draw blood on an unconscious patient who is a reserve officer for the Rigby Police Department in eastern Idaho.

The video taken at University Hospital in Salt Lake City shows nurse Alex Wubbels calmly explaining to Salt Lake Det. Jeff Payne that she couldn't draw blood on a patient who had been injured in a car accident. She told the officer a patient was required to give consent for a blood sample or be under arrest. Otherwise, she said police needed a warrant.

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

Rigby police on Friday thanked Wubbels for stopping the Salt Lake City officer from obtaining a blood sample. 

Rigby police said that William Gray was severely injured in a Utah crash in July when the semi-truck he was driving for work was hit by another car. They said in a statement they didn't know until Thursday that the nurse was arrested after refusing to allow blood to be drawn from Gray.

The department thanked the nurse Wubbels and the hospital "for standing firm" and protecting the Grays' rights.

The statement said Gray is still hospitalized.

The Salt Lake Tribune reports Wubbels was not charged.

Salt Lake City police said Payne will be put on paid administrative leave after prosecutors called for a criminal investigation.

Police Chief Mike Brown said in a statement Friday that his department will comply with the investigation into Det. Payne. 

Salt Lake County's Unified Police Department will run the criminal probe into Payne's actions on July 26, which got widespread attention after Wubbels and her lawyers released the dramatic video Thursday.

Brown and the mayor of Salt Lake City have apologized for the incident and changed their policies to mirror hospital protocols.
 

 

 

© 2017 Associated Press


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