Cop stops ambulance enroute to hospital, chokes EMT

May 27, 2009 by  
Filed under Police Brutality & Abuse Of Power

cop-chokes-emt(ABC)   Paden – A paramedic could face charges after a scuffle with a state trooper that was caught on cell phone camera.

It happened Sunday near Paden in Okfuskee County. That’s about 70 miles southwest of Tulsa.

Kenyada Davis’ mother was being transported in the ambulance and recorded the incident on his cell phone camera.
“This highway patrolman pulled over my mom’s ambulance because he was mad we didn’t pull over and he’s trying to arrest the EMT from taking my mother to the hospital,” Davis is seen saying on the recording.

Davis continues to record as first, one trooper can be seen talking to one of the paramedics. A couple of minutes later, another trooper is seen confronting another paramedic and attempting to arrest him. The paramedic can be seen shoving the trooper at which time the scuffle breaks out.

Maurice White, Jr. is the critical care paramedic seen in the video. In a statement, White says the trooper was upset because the ambulance driver didn’t yield when the trooper approached from behind. White says the ambulance driver, Paul Franks, didn’t see the trooper.

The trooper pulled Franks over and was going to write a citation for failure to yield, but White says he tried to tell them they were on an emergency call and needed to take the patient to the hospital and that’s when the trooper attempted to arrest White for obstructing an officer.

A brief struggle followed, at which point the trooper grabbed White by the throat. Davis’ cell phone captured this incident on video. White says the trooper later told him they could continue on to the hospital, but that he would be under arrest once they got there. White was never arrested, but says troopers told him he should be prepared to turn himself in if a warrant was issued.

The district attorney in Okfuskee County is expected to take a look at the video and may file charges as soon as this week.

***UPDATE***

JUNE 15, 2009

SINCE POSTING THIS ARTICLE I HAVE COME ACROSS TWO (2) MORE VIDEOS PERTAINING TO THIS INCIDENT

Full, Un-edited Dash Cam Video of Oklahoma State Trooper vs. EMT

EMT CHOKED BY COP: Driver Speaks Out

Comments

74 Responses to “Cop stops ambulance enroute to hospital, chokes EMT”
  1. john says:

    seriously? an ambulance? what the heck was that guy thinking? fire him.

  2. Clayton says:

    Once the officer was informed that the ambulance was transporting a patient he should have offered an escort in lieu of attempting to make an arrest, if he had had a lick of sense.

  3. MissLadyL says:

    This is deplorable. Nothing but his pride, and obviously racist. He called him all types of names…disgusting. They should fire him. Would he have stopped one with the sirens blaring????? He needed to fill his quota.

  4. william oliver says:

    What a bunch of dummies, why do you think Ambulance are only allowed to run RED lights, and Police use RED and Blue. Why didnt the dum ass just sign the ticket and go on. HHHOPD

  5. PMT says:

    Looks like an unemployed ex-cop, a millionaire EMT driver and a bankrupt county to me.

  6. kellen says:

    cops are authority grabing douchebag bitches. i say who the fuck are they. They can put there hands on whoever when ever but if someone chokes a cop there going to prison but 9 times out of 10 the pigs are is panty wast bitches that hide behind there badge and there gun.

  7. Carol Hammond says:

    The Paramedic may be charged… NOT the Trooper? Are you freakin’ kidding me? This is Absolutely ridiculous. The trooper should be fired. Both paramedics were being screamed and cursed at right from the beginning. This Trooper was unbelievably out of control. Can you imagine one of your family members being stopped on a dark road, late at night by this guy? No telling what would happen. OUTRAGEOUS!!!!!

  8. john pattison says:

    I cannot understand the lack of basic intelligence on the part of this officer. Once he is told the ambulance is transporting a patient that should be the end of any thought of a citation for anything. The officer should indicate he will immediately provide an escort to the hospital. If the paramedics, who should know, indicate lights and sirens are not in the patient’s best interest, then the police officer should directly accept the profesional opinion.

    This officer also has a foul mouth, and does not hesitate to use crude language right away. This is “cop attitude” allover: yell, shout, issue instuctions and act the “big boss” right away.

    The only good thing is he did not taser – maybe because he did not have one.

    What kind of training do these officers receive before they are turned loose on the public? Are they evaluated for psychological and emotional stability? What is the minimum level of formal education required? Some of these officers do not strike me as especially well educated people – maybe a weak high school with little more?

  9. Thomas Fierro says:

    I’ve been reading comments and looking at evidence (videos) for 2 days.
    Anyone who thinks this Trooper is guilty of anything but being too easy on this poor medic that’s being choked to death,is not carrying a full deck. Why doesn’t someone show us the bruised Medic from his supposed choke hold.The son with the cell phone is really concerned about his mother,isn’t he?
    WHY WASN’T THE AMBULANCE RUNNING LIGHTS AND SIREN?????NOT EVEN EMERGENCY FLASHERS!!!
    The minute that Medic reached out and shoved me would’ve been when he was arrested and cuffed,,with the LEAST amount of FORCE needed.
    By the way John, they make around 35,000 in my state. Is That enough for you to put up with the crap we’ve seen here and get shot at for a living???

  10. Innocent Bystander says:

    Read the comments, watched both videos.
    1. The ambulance was not obstructed from pulling over to the shoulder by a stopped car. The car was pulling over because of approaching emergency vehicles with siren on. Watch the dash cam video. The car is still moving and still pulling over as the ambulance passes it. The ambulance could have and should have pulled over behind that car or immediately in front of it. The ambulance did not move right until the officer’s car crosses the centerline and starts to pass. If the ambulance was not on an emergency call itself (at least lights, if not siren) it must yield right of way to the police officer and did not. The traffic citation is appropriate.

    2. When a police officer stops your vehicle, you remain in your seat with your hands clearly visible on the steering wheel and let the officer approach the window. You do not move your hands or get out of the vehicle unless instructed to do so by the officer. These cops stop cars for traffic violations and get shotguns and pistols stuck in their faces, shot, killed, and until they know what they’re going to find in as they walk up to the driver’s window, their scared shitless. YOU DO NOT GIVE THEM AN EXCUSE TO FEEL ANY MORE THREATENED THAN THEY HAVE TO BE. Why did the driver get out of the ambulance?

    3. You do not place this wary officer and sandwich him between a driver in front of him and a large second person (forget about color, it’s irrelevant here) who has come out of the back of the ambulance and interrupts the officer’s confrontation with the driver. You do not shout or raise your voice to the officer. YOU DO NOT CONTINUE TO INTERFERE IN THIS PROCESS WHEN THE OFFICER ORDERS YOU TO GET BACK INTO THE VEHICLE. What you do is, you get back in the ambulance, pick up the radio mike, and call for assistance from your dispatcher. Then you administer to the medical needs of your patient, which is what you’re there for. You defuse the situation by removing yourself from the officer’s threat perspective. You let your driver take care of himself. He’s an adult, and he’s just getting a traffic ticket, so let him deal with it. Staying outside and getting in the officer’s face is going to get you arrested, manhandled, or shot. Or are you trying to pick a fight?

    4. Now the family and friends show up and the officer is surrounded by a bunch of people trying to give him ‘advice’. He doesn’t know if any of them have a weapon. Some of them seem agitated. Think this officer feels safe? Think knowing he has a gun makes him feel safe with 4 or 5 belligerent people around him? Right or wrong, these people are demonstrating STUPIDITY. They are pissing off a man with a gun. Don’t try this at home, kids….

    5. First contact vs. assault? The officer instructs the ambulance driver to come back to his cruiser with him. The paramedic reaches out to physically prevent the driver from going with the officer. The officer grabs the paramedic’s arm and tries to spin him away, to be face-first against the ambulance. The paramedic breaks away from the officer’s grasp. That is the sequence of touchy-feely events that happens in a matter of 1 or 2 seconds. The driver looks like he’s OK with the idea of going to the cruiser. LET HIM GO. You’ve already been told that your verbal interference is not being appreciated by this officer. What do you suppose he’s going to think about your PHYSICAL INTERFERENCE? You are now obstructing the officer from doing his duty. You can and should be arrested for this.

    6. Was this officer a bit to ‘enthusiastic’ about giving out this ticket? Yes. Was he more ‘volatile’ than he probably should have been? Yes. Does he deserve to be reprimanded for, perhaps, contributing to the escalation of this confrontation instead of taking a step back and maybe defusing it? Yes. Should he have really felt all the threatened about an ambulance driver and a paramedic. Probably not, unless there is some report out about a stollen ambulance or an ambulance transporting illegal drugs or some other illegal activity. We don’t know any of that. We assume that an ambulance is an angel’s chariot and that the cop should not interfere with its righteous mission….

    So let’s put the blame where it’s due. This cop was having a bad day. That’s obvious. He went after a legitimate traffic stop and things got out of hand. THE AMBULANCE CREW DID EVERYTHING WRONG IN DEALING WITH AN OFFICER WHO WANTS TO RIGHT A TICKET. And before we judge how this cop’s actions risked the patient’s health, especially since he doesn’t have a ‘safe’ opportunity to look in the back of the ambulance until the paramedic finally walks away (we’ll have you on your way soon, ma’am), bear in mind that the paramedic is outside the ambulance for a long time, ignoring his responsibilities to the patient. If he’s not that concerned, why do we expect the cop to be?

    People need to see, not just look. The video’s and the media coverage are meant to spin this incident against the cop. When you really see what’s going on, the cop’s not the only ‘bad guy’ here.

  11. Innocent Bystander says:

    You all need to watch the whole video from the cop’s dash cam. The cop had his lights and siren on, the ambulance did not. The car in front of the ambulance pulled over, probably heard the cop’s siren, saw the ambulance in his rear view and pulled over. The ambulance goes on and doesn’t start to pull over until the cop moves left to pass him. Cop probably looked at the driver as he passed and the dumb ambulance driver flipped him off.

    The cop goes to his emergency destination, finds other cops already on the scene, is not needed, then sees the ambulance cruise by. He gets in his car and takes off after the ambulance to give him a ticket for not yielding right of way to a police car with lights and siren on.

    Cop confronts driver and rear occupant gets out of ambulance and starts what becomes an arguement with cop. Family of patient gets around cop too, shouting. Cop orders paramedic to get back in vehicle and he doesn’t. DUMB!!! When a cop tells you to get back in the vehicle, you better do it or he’s going to get pretty pissed off at you. Get back in, take care of your patient, and call for help on your radio.

    Cop may have been overzealous, but paramedic did everything wrong to make situation worse. Tell the cop you’ve got a patient once, then leave him alone and follow his instructions. Then you don’t get choked, pepper sprayed, tasered, or shot….

    Watch the whole video before you make ignorant comments like the ones above. The cop is not the only bad guy here.

  12. Douglas says:

    The Cop should be fired. Period. This was an ambulance. Once he knew there was a patient in there he should have followed the ambulance and dealt with the citation after the patient was delivered. Cops and ambulances both exist to SERVE THE GENERAL PUBLIC. The patient gets first priority over all other issues. PERIOD. If the cop did not register the fact that the paramedic said, at least 3 times, that there is a patient in the ambulance, then he should NOT BE A COP. There are plenty of other jobs available for hyperactive rednecks out there.

  13. john pattison says:

    The paramedics did not behave as they should have – this is so. This sense of the needs of the patient to get to the hospital is probably what is at the bottom of the agitated paramedics. I would imagine it is not often they have been pulled over on the way to the hospital with a patient. For them, this must be a bizarre and unusual situation for which they are entirely unprepared or trained. Not so the officer,” who does this all the time.

    The bottom line is the needs of the patient take top priority over everything and everyone else, no matter what gestures may or may not have been used or seen, no matter what the traffic ticket is or is not about, and no matter whos ego has to temporarily give way.

    The officer should have had that priority clear in his mind. What eventually happened should have happened sooner – get back in, drive the patient to the hospital, I will escort, at least put your flashing lights on, and I will deal with your traffic ticket after all that is done.

    That would have been the intelligent response from the officer. I note some here, and the officer’s attorney, are making a really big issue out of the fact that the ambulance did not have its lights and siren and so forth going. I also note that the officer makes an accusation of having received an unacceptable gesture from the driver. The driver denies that.

    The original issue appears to be that the ambulance driver did not yield right-of-way to the police cruiser as it was doing something else, the cruiser having its flashers on and the ambulance not so. In itself, this may be a valid reason for the issue of a traffic ticket. But, to make the point again, not right then and not right there while a patient needs to get to a hospital.

    It also appears the DA, having reviewed the tape at least, will not be charging anyone with anything. I understand the officer is on paid administrative leave, something “they” always do when a police officer is thought to have been out-of-line in the discharge of his or her duties.

    Remember, too, if the officer is charged with anything, he is as with all the rest of us, presumably innocent until proven guilty of whatever he may be charged with. I hope he has to pay for his own lawyer, as we would if charged and “fighting it.”

    In viewing the tape again, the officers do not appear to have used excessive force. I doubt the paramedic is even bruised as the restraining arm of the officer does not appear to be especially aggressive.

    I agree that race does not appear to be an issue in this matter. For example, angry as he is, and swearing, the officer does not make any racial reference.

    I cannot fault the family member for making the video – having this level of evidence is important, and would have been more important if the patient had actually died because of the officer’s actions and decisions. Further, had this family member entered the argument or entered the ambulance, he might have caused more harm to his mother than good.

    Experience does show that, without solid contrary evidence, such as video tapes,
    police will say things in court, and will support each other under oath, to avoid legal responsibility themselves. One good ecample of that is the taser assault causing death by four RCMP officers in Canada at the Vancouver Airport. Police testimony as to what happened and why was shown, clearly, to be false when viewing the tapes. Another example is the New York cop-thug, who charged the cyclist and knocked him over – that tape, as I recall, got that cop-thug charged with assault.

    Police officers, as with the rest of us, are not coerced or forced to do this work. They have freely and voluntarily chosen to earn a living this way as opposed to some other way. In so doing, they have voluntarily accepted the stress and pressures that come with the job they have freely chosen. All jobs have both advantages and stress, not just law enforcement. If the professional police officer is actually an unhappy, frustrated cop, then he should consider another line of work in which he is more relaxed and happy.

    Police officers need to have at least some college or university education, they need to be professionally screened for emotional stability and diplomatic skills, and if they meet those standards, yes, they need to be paid better than $35,000 a year. Our society does not need “cops.” What we need are “police officers.”

  14. Tom says:

    Why is nobody asking the other obvious question? Where was this cop heading to with lights and sirens that he had time to stop and commit this atrocity…so either he road raged and ignored an actual emergency, or he was just abusing his position. Hard to tell which from the resultant episode huh? ;P

  15. Jeff Bray says:

    I think a certain cop was picked on when he was in high school, and is seeking his revenge through a power trip now days. You see the cop speeding out of no where and pass them. What harm was done that required this cops behavior? How is this not public endangerment case for the officer? You hear the cop say, “You don’t talk to a state trooper like that.” What happened to freedom of speech and how is this officer serving the public? Fire this lame excuse for a police officer.

  16. SAM says:

    The officer’s dash cam shows that he stopped momentarily at a scene where he did not even exit his vehicle then proceeded to leave that scene to follow the ambulance. I presume that the initial stop was the “emergency” that he was heading to. Otherwise, he had time to make that stop and this traffic stop on the way to the supposed emergency he was speeding off to. So my question is… What was the point? If he got to the emergency which turned out not to be one without what seemed to be too much obstruction from this ambulance why did he bother? In his report he claims the driver gave him the finger as he passed on the highway. That, to me, sounds like a justification for his pursuing this ambulance because, after getting to the other site he realized he had nothing else to do. And even if this was a legitimate traffic stop once he realized a patient was in the ambulance he could have taken care of the citation at the hospital. As for the gentleman who exited the back of the ambulance, I do not fault him. He was the supervisor of the ambulance crew and he was trying to get the patient to the hospital which he was very calmly explaining to the officer who proceeded to curse at him and speak to him in a manner that, police officer or not, was inappropriate. Frankly this officer’s attitude, more then anything else, is what caused this situation to escalate as it did. And, yes, he should be fired/seek other employment if the pressures of the job are so much that he can not better regulate his attitude toward the public.

  17. oldmev says:

    This is just another example of how we have turned into a police state in America. It went slowly. While the courts picked away at our rights in traffic stops under the guise of the drug war (what an expensive joke that’s become)
    Then came implied consent, meaning just because you’re behind the wheel of a vehicle your rights can be violated. Then came nothing more than the cop saying he has a suspicion, allowing them full power over citizens anytime we’re in public. So the police are not only the law but the judge and jury; violating the amendments to the constitution known as the bill of rights. Except now it’s the adjusted bill of rights, when the cop feels like allowing them. It is the old ruse of convince the majority that you need this type of power for the small minority of people who cause problems and by the time the majority realize what that really means it’s too late, by then anyone and everyone is being denied basic rights when in public no matter the circustances. It won’t be long before this carries over to your home, we already have warrantless intrusions going on all over the country now. Old ladies will be tassered, your voice will be silenced and ambulance drivers with patients in the back will be held up just because the cop is pissed. We can still stop this, it’s not too late, but we all need to write our leaders both locally and nationally with our concerns, but mainly our disgust at the pwoer allowed police today. We need to pay attention to what the district attorneys are telling the closed grand juries that get these law abusing cops to walk on everything from tassing old ladies to killing unharmed people.

  18. Meme says:

    These racist cops need to be stopped they are upset that Obama is president and taking it black productive citizens

  19. Animal says:

    Are you kidding me?? Do ambulances even need to obide to the police if it is an emergency condition like that?? I would not only fire that cop I would make him drive around with the ambulance driver that he choked with no pay and make that cop do all of his dirty work. On a serious note though that is serious bullshit, hopefully they find that this cop is a dumbass and that he is revoked of his license. If I were the judge of this pending case I would laugh as soon as he came in and say, “Yeah you’re a dumbass thank you for your badge and gun..=)

  20. Daniel says:

    Weather or not the cop had reason to pull the ambulance over is null and void; he did.(personally I don’t think the ambulance driver had a whole lot of time to react to the cop. His attention should have been and probably was with the car pulling over in front of him and avoiding it then secondly pulling over for the cop. After reviewing the video I believe the whole incident accorded in about 10-12 sec.Going from the cop being aprox. 200′ behind the ambulance to the ambulance passing the car and him starting to pullover per dashcam time stamp. Time-stamp, 13:56:00 the ambulance is already a very short distance from the car before he even get close. The car starts pull over 2 sec into the indecent at time-stamp 13:56:02. Then ambulance passes the car by 5 sec into incident and ambulance has room to pull over at time-stamp 13:56:05. The ambulance driver brakes and starts to pull over time-stamp 13:56:09-13:56:10. The cop fully passes him by 13:56:13 so by going by that after he passes the car he pulls over 4-5 sec later. Not a ticket-able offense by my standards and absolutely his reaction was sheer power trip authoritarian ego) That being said police are supposed to take control of a situation maintaining a calm and collective scene. Not immediately start shouting at people his correct reaction should be asking ;did you not see me i had my lights and siren going? Not automatically saying I am going give you a ticket for failure to yield. A police officers duty is to investigate a situation then act appropriately. There were several extenuating circumstances here that would negate him not needing a ticket. Further more the ambulance drivers supervisor trying to intervene was probably to protect his patients care in a timely manner. He was trying to diffuse the situation even going as far to say that he is fine with going to jail once they reach the hospital. When the cop tries to take the driver back to the car he is informed by both ambulance worker they have a patient. After that the police officer is informed that he ran up on them quickly and they didn’t have time to pull over (extenuating circumstance). All of this should have been enough to make him realize that this was not the time or place to be making a stop. Any further action that he felt necessary could have been done at a later time once the patient was in the hospital. Instead the officer decides again that he needs to have the driver come to his car so he can ticket him. At this time the ambulance supervisor again reminds the officer that there is a patient in the ambulance, and stands in between the officer and the driver. At that point the officer grabs the supervisors arm in order to presumably handcuff him. Then tells him to “get you ass (inaudible)and turn around” and pushes him into the ambulance. Now this is the only point that I can say the ambulance supervisor was in the wrong. He tried to resist, although I am sure to protect his patient right to treatment. I think he could have found a better way to react seeing that this officer was already unreasonable nothing good would come from this. Still I would be understandably would be aggravated at his refusal to care for the needs of the patient they have or even hint at a sense of ergeancy. Now from this point on he starts to be video taped from the sons cell phone. He is surrounded by a lot of whiteness to to his behavior who are pleading for everyone to calm down and just follow the to the hospital. The officer decides to release him and call for back up. Then cop then returns and the supervisor asks if he can go and the officer says no. He then talks to the driver now that he is be video taped suddenly in a calm manner and maintains to be calm for a short while. Once his back up arrives he returns and confronts the driver again telling him he is under arrest. The Supervisor tells his back up he wants to press charges, this seems to infuriate the officer and again he tries to restrain the supervisor. Again I feel that he could have made a better choice but he decides to resist to the point the he gets chocked. Which is not a proper procedure that being said he is a large dude. Once supervisor stops resiting and after everyone pleading they finally are allowed to leave. To summarize the office did not do his duty in such to maintain calm scene. Also he obviously was taking everything personally which is not proper procedure. Finally allowing his emotions to dictate his reactions other than his training. He definitely needs some kind of anger management and retaing up to the point of discharging him. Which should be based on his past performance and or complaints.

  21. Debido says:

    As a prior EMT once married to a Paramedic and part-time police officer, many things were done wrong on both sides. There are many good and valid comments listed here. My only concern was that once the officer was informed of the patient, he should have followed or escorted the ambulance to the hospital. Once transfer of the patient was completed… take it outside. Even though the ambulance was not running a code (Lights and sirens) doesn’t mean that the patient is well enough to lay in the back, listening to this commotion.

  22. El Gee says:

    Medic crew completely at fault. They are suppose to operate there respective apparatus following all rules of the road unless otherwise instructed by a police officer. Video clearly shows the ambulance not yeilding the right away and what difference does it make if they have patient or not, they could of called for another unit to assist if they could not complete the transport. The medic supervisor was completely inappropriate in trying to defuse the situation that had nothing to do with him. Trooper informed him several times he was not addressing him and was addressing the driver, so I have to ask the medic supervisor, how exactly did you get promoted? Affirmative action and not common sense right? In my humble opinion, the only thing that the officer may need to work on is his language, but I pay taxes for them to do their jobs, not how they speak. I think we are forgetting we charge law enforcement with a certain amount of responsibility to enforce the law, train them to meet that mission and equip them to accomplish it accordingly, not question the manner on how they provide it. Personally, I think the medic is racist because he was not complying to the instructions of a white police officer and I have to ask why? Hope he keeps this in mind the next time he calls for help, because it may be leaving some nonsense civil rights case at the courthouse.

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