A nurse says she was illegally arrested by a Salt Lake City police officer because she wouldn’t draw blood from an unconscious patient.
The nurse, Alex Wubbels, of the University of Utah Hospital, said she was following a hospital policy by not drawing blood from a patient—despite the orders from police Detective Jeff Payne, according to the Salt Lake Tribune.
A video shows Wubbels and Payne in a deadlock over whether the police officer was allowed get a blood sample from a patient who was injured in a collision on July 26, 2017. The other driver was left dead, the Tribune reported. Wubbels explained to the officer that the hospital and the police department had a legal agreement in place outlining the circumstances when blood samples can be taken from patients.
“I was just trying to do it the right way,” Wubbels said. “If they need blood they need to go through the proper channels.”
After that, Payne says, “We’re done” and then arrests her. “Please sir, you are hurting me,” Wubbels says as he puts handcuffs on her. “Then walk,” the officer ordered.
“There was both an unlawful assault and an unlawful arrest,” Karra Porter, Wubbels’ attorney, told Fox13.
“She was rightfully afraid of her well-being,” said Porter. “They refused to take any steps to protect her.”
A spokesperson for the Salt Lake City Police Department said they “immediately took action” after viewing the footage.
“We’ve looked at our policies and we want to take steps to make sure something like this doesn’t happen again,” said Sgt. Brandon Shearer.
The hospital, meanwhile, will make changes.
“University of Utah Health supports Nurse Wubbles and her decision to focus first and foremost on the care and well-being of her patient,” said Suzanne Winchester, a spokesperson for the hospital. “She followed procedures and protocols in this matter and was acting in her patient’s best interest. We have worked with our law enforcement partners on this issue to ensure an appropriate process for moving forward.”