Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Kid's mother called 911 because of his game playing

Boston police say a frustrated woman called 911 because she couldn't get her 14-year-old son to stop playing the Grand Theft Auto video game and go to sleep.

Officer Joe Zanoli recently said the mother called for help around 2:30 a.m. on a Saturday to say that the teenager also walked around the house and turned on all the lights.

Two officers  responded to the call and persuaded the boy to obey his mother.

Zanoli says the mother's 911 call over video game obsession "was a little unusual, but by no means is it surprising..."(info from The Boston Herald)

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Wacko woman arrested for 48 phony 911 calls

Caryn Sodaro of Lochbuie, Colorado was arrested recently following a four-month investigation. Police say she made 48 phony 911 calls threatening suicide, asking police to shoot her and claiming that her mother was dying of a heart attack.

Weld County sheriff's spokesman Shane Scofield says the woman used a prepaid cellphone that didn't have a name registered to it. With the help of the phone company, investigators were able to trace the calls to Lochbuie, about 18 miles north of Denver.

Sodaro was being held without bail on suspicion of attempting to influence a public official, a felony, and two misdemeanor offenses of false reporting and resisting arrest. (info from Colorado Connection.)

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Not 911:
Flashing red Batphone can be delivered before Christmas

Now everyone can have a red phone with a flashing light like Batman.

When there’s trouble in Gotham City, Police Commissioner Gordon calls caped crusader Batman, the secret alter ego of millionaire Bruce Wayne.

At Wayne Manor, the flashing red Batphone is answered by Alfred the butler, who tells Wayne about the trouble. Then Wayne and his young ward Dick Grayson put on their superhero costumes. As Batman and Robin, they race from the Batcave in the Batmobile to battle evil-doers, or rescue citizens in distress.

Now everyone can have a bright red flashing Batphone just like a superhero. When an emergency call -- or even an ordinary call -- comes in, a bright red light centered in a shiny chrome ring starts flashing to attract attention.

The Batphone has classic sixties styling, with heavy-duty construction, a two-year warranty, and is made in the USA. It gets all of its power from the phone line, and doesn’t require a power cord or batteries. It can work on an ordinary home phone line, or on an "analog extension port" in a business phone system.

The phone rings when the light flashes, unless a purchaser prefers the bell to be disconnected for silent signaling, or an optional high-pitched "BatSignal" or buzzer to be installed instead of the bell. Price with the bell is $122, including Priority Mail shipping to all 50 states.

Order online at, or call toll-free 1-888-225-3999.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Wacko called 911 to complain about burger

A woman in California called 911 because Burger King did not prepare her Western Cheeseburger the way she wanted it.

Here's a partial transcript from a recording provided by Burger Club NY.

Caller: I'm over here at Burger King in Laguna Niguel ... I'm at a drive-through right now. I ordered my food three times. They're mopping the floor inside and I understand they're busy -- they're not even busy. I've been the only car here. I asked four different times for them to make me a Wester Barbecue Burger. They keep giving me a hamburger with lettuce, tomato and cheese, onions.

I said, "I'm not leaving. I want a Western Burger." I just got my kids from Tae-Kwon-Do, they're hungry.

She gave me another hamburger, it's wrong.

The manager... whoever she is, she said, "do you want your money back?" I said "no, my kids are hungry and I have to jump on the toll freeway."

Dispatcher: OK, so what exactly is it you want us to do for you?

Caller: Send an officer down here. I want them to make me...

Dispatcher: Ma'am, we're not going to go down and enforce your Western Bacon Cheeseburger.

Caller: What am I supposed to do?

Dispatcher: This is between you and the manager. We're not going to enforce having a hamburger. That's not a criminal issue there's nothing criminal there.

Caller: So I just sit here and watch?

Dispatcher: You need to calmly and rationally speak to the manager and figure out what to do between you.

Caller: She did come up and I said, "Can I please have my Western burger?" She said "I'm not going to dealing with [you]"... she walked away.

Dispatcher: This is not a criminal issue...

Caller: You're supposed to protect me...

Dispatcher: What are we protecting you from, a wrong cheeseburger?

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

911 hang-up leads to drug bust

A 911 hang-up call in Lockport, New York led to an arrest for marijuana possession.

A State Police trooper went to a home to investigate a hang-up emergency call and while the trooper was interviewing the homeowner, he found several bags of marijuana.

Mark B. Sweeney was charged with unlawful possession of pot and was issued a ticket to appear in court. (info from The Buffalo News)

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Man lied to 911 about robbery rather than let wife know he spent the money

Jordan Dominque of Panama City Beach, Florida initially claimed he had been robbed outside a store, but later admitted to deputies that he had lied when surveillance video showed no attack.

The man conceded that he had reported the fake robbery “just so that he could tell his wife that his money had been taken and that he had not just spent it,” a Bay County Sheriff’s Office report said.

Dominque was charged with making a false report of a crime. He was arrested and taken to jail.

Dominque had called 911 from inside the store, claiming he was getting into his car when a man dressed in black hit him and took $100 cash from him.

A deputy consulted the store’s surveillance video and saw no such attack. The video showed Dominque enter the store, then leave and go to his vehicle. He sat in his car for a short amount of time, then reentered the store and used the store’s phone to call 911.

“When I confronted him, he admitted to me he was having money problems at home,” the deputy noted. “He stated he called 911 knowing that no such crime had actually been committed, just so that he could tell his wife that his money had been taken and that he had not just spent it.” (info fro mthe News Herald)

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Kid called 911 when parents took game from him

A 15-year-old boy told police in Buffalo Grove, Illinois that his parents had taken away his video game system and asked whether they were within their rights.

Police told him they were.

The teen called 911 but then hung up, said Cmdr. Steve Husak. Officers went to the house, and after hearing the story, told him that his parents have the authority to take away his Xbox as punishment.

He also was advised to listen to his parents. Husak did not know why the boy was being punished. (info from The Chicago Tribune)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Broke and horny, man called 911 for sex

A man in Tampa, Florida was arrested for repeatedly calling 911 looking for sex, and claimed that 911 was the only number he could dial after running out of cellphone minutes.

Joshua Basso made sexual comments to the 911 dispatcher and asked if he could go to her house. Investigators say she hung up, but he called back four more times.

He was arrested about 15 minutes later at his home and charged with making a false 911 call. Basso reportedly told officers that he didn't think he would get in trouble for calling 911. He is listed as unemployed with arrests for theft and other crimes dating back to 2001. (info from the New York Daily News)

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Drug dealers busted after accidental 911 call

Two drug dealers in Yukon, Oklahoma were arrested after one of them accidentally called 911 from his cellphone during a drug deal.

During the call, the men were heard and recorded discussing their drug business. One said, "They can sell it. it's dope, but it's not good dope."

The men counted out illegally obtained pills, marijuana, and ecstasy whil the phone transmittted from inside one of the suspects' pockets for 30 minutes.

"Hello 911?" the dispatcher asked.

"How much of the 'X' do you want? 50....50%?" a suspect said.

Police tracked the call to a house and arrested Mark Clair and Shannon McAlister for drug possession with intent to distribute.

Klare Ly, Community Affairs Specialist with the Yukon Police Department said, "It's weird how we get our cases sometimes but we're happy to take drugs off the street." "I think you can file this under the stupid criminals file," she explained.

Officers estimate that the drugs recovered had a street value of about $20,000. In total, 514 pills in the form of illegally obtained prescription drugs and ecstacy pills; 70.5 grams of marijuana; and 2.2 grams of a white powdery substance were recovered from the drug bust. Both men are facing multiple felony charges including possession of a CDS; possession of a CDS with intent to distribute; conspiracy to commit a felony; and possession of marijuana. (info from KSBI TV)

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Woman called 911 to say she was driving drunk

Mary Strey of Granton, Wisconsin was charged with operating a motor vehicle while under the influence, after she called 911 to report that she was driving drunk.

“Somebody’s really drunk driving down Granton Road”, the caller stated when a 911 dispatcher answered the phone.

The dispatcher asked if the caller was behind the drunk driver, to which the caller replied “No, I am them.”

The dispatcher asked, “Okay, so you’re calling to report you’re driving drunk?”

She replied, “Yes.” Later, she stated, "I was drinking all over, I'm sorry. I shouldn't be driving".

The dispatcher told Strey to pull her vehicle over, and she complied. She waited for a deputy to arrive with her hazard lights flashing. According to the police report, Strey failed field sobriety tests, and a preliminary breath test showed she had a blood alcohol content of .19, more than twice the legal limit to drive.

She was given a citation for operating a vehicle with a prohibited alcohol content of .10 or more. She’s due in court in December, facing charges of first offense operating under the influence. (info from WSAW TV)

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Ohio 911 operator in trouble
for sleeping on the job

A 911 dispatcher in Warren County, Ohio, has been accused of sleeping on the job and been placed on paid administrative leave.

County Administrator Dave Gully took Shawn Mason off the job last week. He was to remain on leave until a disciplinary hearing.

Mason has a history of sleeping when he's on the clock, according to county officials. He was written up for dozing two years ago, and then given a verbal warning in September.

The most recent incident happened this month when another employee took a medical call, put it in the system and waited for Mason to send for help. When the call wasn't dispatched, Gully said, the call taker went to Mason to find out what happened. Mason was sleeping.

This allegation comes as the Warren County call center is under intense scrutiny because of a call where Ryan Widmer reported that his wife, Sarah, might have drowned in their bathtub. The dispatcher in that case, Ron Kronenberger, was not asleep, as an earlier report suggested. But he appeared confused, at one point asking Widmer if he is Sarah's mom and later failing to tell Widmer how to perform CPR. Kronenberger was not disciplined.

An outside human resources firm is reviewing the what occurred on Aug. 11, 2008, the night when Widmer reported finding his wife unresponsive.

Because of the high-profile nature of the case - Widmer was convicted of murder, but later awarded a new trial because of juror misconduct - the Kronenberger call, and the most recent sleeping allegations, are getting a lot of attention. Frank Young, the former emergency management director, abruptly resigned after the initial sleeping report surfaced.

Questions arose about whether the sleeping incident was an isolated one when a supervisor reported having trouble keeping dispatchers awake at night. Commissioners, as a result, have since called for the county emergency operation center to be analyzed. (info from the Cincinnati Enquirer)

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

I need a break.

I began blogging on 5/7/06. I started writing one blog, and gradually built up to five blogs a day. I got out of bed at 3:30AM to start my daily writing.

I did it for fun, but lately it has seemed too much like work. I'm not sure that I am officially "burned-out," but I have definitely lost enthusiasm for the daily grind of blogging.

Since the blog obligation was only to myself, and I have no contract, it's an obligation I am free to suspend, cancel or modify at will. No one has a paid-up subscription for words they won't receive.

Therefore, after 2,715 posts, I have decided to take some time off. I need to finish writing a few books, and some essays, and maybe I'll even try poetry and songwriting. My to-do list includes many unread books and un-watched DVDs. I want to spend more time swimming, and walk my dog more often.

The break will last at least a few weeks, but might even be several months. J. D. Salinger has not published an original work since 1965, but I won't be away that long. Even if I don't come back full-time until the Fall, I might pop back in occasionally if I think there's something worth saying.

I am continuing to write BookMakingBlog, my blog about writing, editing and publishing.


Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Man jailed for calling 911 about lost keys

A man in Tampa, Florida called 911 eight times in one hour because he lost his keys. Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office spokesperson Debbie Carter says George Alvarez became upset with deputies because they could not help him find the keys.

Deputies arrested Alvarez just early Monday morning. He was booked into jail on charges of making a false 911 call and released from jail after posting $500 bail. (info from WFTS)

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Man called 911 about son's messy room

A man in Bedford, Ohio argued with his grown son over a messy bedroom, and called 911. Andrew Mizsak called authorities last Thursday after his 28-year-old son threw a plate of food across the kitchen table and made a fist at him.

His son, also named Andrew, lives with his parents and has a room in the basement. The father says he overreacted when he called 911. He declined to press charges and told police he doesn't want to ruin his son's political career. The younger Mizsak works as a political consultant and is a school board member.

The son says he and his father love each very much and that he's lucky to be living in the house rent-free. He also promises to keep his room clean. (info from the Cleveland Plain Daler)

Monday, May 18, 2009

Robber called 911 claiming he was robbed

Sheriff's Deputies in Brazos County, Texas said a Bryan man called 911 Saturday, claiming to be the victim of an armed robbery, but it was the caller who took the money. Edward Velasco Junior was arrested Saturday.

According to the Sheriff's Office, Velasco told a dispatcher he was robbed at gun point while at his uncle's house, and said the suspect took $5,000. Investigators said while they were at the home, Velasco's uncle called from out of state and asked them to question Velasco.

Officers said Velasco allowed them to search his vehicle, and they found an envelope of cash in his car. Deputies said he admitted to taking the money from his uncle's home on Friday.

Deputies said Velasco's uncle refused to file charges. He was charged with making a false report, and was released on a $2,000 bond. (Info from

Friday, May 15, 2009

Worried robber called 911 to be rescued

A man in Woodruff, South Carolina who robbed a convenience store, called police on himself and surrendered because he "was in some trouble and wanted to get off the streets."

William Gary called 911 to report his crime about 12:45 a.m. Thursday, about an hour after he used a knife to rob Li'L Cricket and said he would be waiting with his hands up.

Spartanburg County Master Deputy Tony Ivey said deputies were skeptical and "went in very cautiously" but spotted Gary standing in front of a residence with his hands up. Ivey said Gary was "very cooperative" with deputies.

Gary was arrested on the admission of the armed robbery. A clerk, who was not injured, positively identified Gary as the man who entered the store and demanded money while armed with a 5-inch knife. Authorities found his knife near the Fire Department.

A deputy instructed Gary not to tell him anything until a detective arrived, but Gary replied that "he didn't care about all that." Gary then told the deputy that he got $31 during the robbery and said he was "in trouble and needed to get off the streets" and didn't "want to get his wife and kid involved in his mess."

Deputies added more charges against Gary Thursday evening, accusing him of burglary, arson and grand larceny last month. He was being held on $25,000 bond.

Gary and Kenneth Hendricks are accused of breaking into a trailer and setting it on fire on April 30. A report indicates that Gary took guitars from the residence before the men started a fire near a window air conditioner. Four dogs died during the fire. Hendricks was charged with burglary, arson and obtaining goods by a false pretense. (info from the Spartanburg Herald-Journal)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Marijuana buyers were robbed and called 911

Two men in Daytona Beach, Florida called 911 after they were robbed at gunpoint while trying to buy 20 pounds of marijuana.

The Volusia County Sheriff's Office reports that Wesley Fehl and Kenneth Jones went to a home Monday with $12,000 to buy the grass. Two men at the home jumped Fehl and Jones, took their money and drove off. Fehl and Jones got in their own vehicle to follow and one of them called 911 for help.

The other vehicle got away, but deputies went back to the house, where they arrested Craig Williams and charged him with robbery. Authorities are still looking for the other man.

It's not clear if drugs or money were recovered. A sheriff's spokesman say charges could follow for Fehl and Jones. (info from the Miami Herald)

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Woman called cops to complain about husband watching porn

A frustrated German housewife called police because her husband would not stop watching porn movies. The woman dialed the emergency police number and tearfully told the dispatcher there was an emergency.

When officers arrived at the scene they found her pacing the apartment while her husband sat in front of the TV watching porn.

She told the police: "Nothing will move him, not even if I offer him the real thing, and he has the TV on so loud I'm sure the neighbors can hear it."

She was told that there was nothing the police could do in such a case, and referred her to a counsellor for help. (info from

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Robber committed suicide when cops arrived after 911 call

One of three men who tried to rob a drugstore in Bellaire, Texas fatally shot himself when police arrived after a customer secretly dialed 911.

Police said two men in hooded sweatshirts burst into a CVS Pharmacy about 11:30 p.m. Sunday while the manager and a co-worker were preparing to close for the night. Three customers were also in the store.

The men shouted and waved their guns, forcing the workers and two of the customers to lie on the floor. One gunman watched the people while the other opened the cash register and took the money. Then one of the gunmen escorted the manager to the back of the store, apparently hoping to rob the safe.

The robbers apparently had not seen the third customer, who had been in the back of the store when the gunmen rushed inside. He hid and called 911 on his cellphone.

Police arrived moments later. They found the lookout near a car with a pistol visible in it and questioned him. Then the officers heard a gunshot.

Moments later, one of the suspects walked outside with his hands in the air after dropping his gun in the store. Police found the other suspect inside, mortally wounded. “It appears to be self-inflicted,” Police Department Assistant Chief Byron Holloway said.

He also said the pair inside the store had seen surveillance camera images of police in the parking lot surrounding the building and likely panicked. (info from Houston Chronicle)

Monday, May 11, 2009

Fleeing murder suspect asked woman to call 911 for him

Late Saturday night, Salvadro Camargo burst into Theresa Lee's home in Sonoma, California and demanded she call 911.

This was a few hours after a man had been shot to death in a house about three miles from Lee’s house.

Camargo, apparently afraid that someone wanted to kill him, hid in her home until police arrived and arrested him. “He told me they were out to kill him, and not to stand by the windows because they would shoot us,” she said. “It was very chaotic. I was very confused.”

Lee’s account adds to the bizarre circumstances surrounding a killing that the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Department continued to investigate Sunday afternoon.

Authorities learned of the killing when a friend of the victim arrived at the Sonoma police station to report the shooting. The man didn’t know the address where the killing occurred, but his description led to a home. Neighbors said the home is rented to Tim Slevin and that one person — not Slevin — was found inside dead from a gunshot wound to the head.

Camargo reportedly fled the murder scene and drove to Lee’s home at about 10:45 p.m. demanding the she call 911. “I assumed there was a car wreck,” Lee said. Camargo appeared to be in shock, she said, and at first he refused to tell her why she needed to call 911. Then things grew increasingly bizarre, Lee said.

“He was terrified. Whatever he knew had happened, he was terrified,” Lee said. “At first I thought he was in shock, then I thought he was probably really high on something. But I don’t know.”

Camargo didn’t threaten her or try to stop her from leaving when police ordered her and her dog to exit out the back door, Lee said. Instead, Camargo begged her not to leave. “He was a pathetic person, on his knees, begging me not to leave as I backed away with my dog,” she said. “I told him he scared me and I needed to leave now.”

With Lee and her dog on the back patio, officers released their police dog, which bit Camargo. “I honestly don’t know how long it lasted. You’d have to ask the 911 operator. It was just so chaotic,” Lee said.

Camargo was jailed on suspicion of murder. He was being held without bail.

The vehicle apparently driven by Camargo, which the victim’s friend had described to police, was found a short distance from Lee’s house. (Info from Santa Rosa Press Democrat)

Monday, May 4, 2009


I'm taking a few days off to finish writing a book and start a new one. I should be back during the week of 5/11.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Cops skipped 911 investigation before drunk driver caused car crash deaths

New Mexico State Police never sent an officer after a 911 call April 13 warning that people later involved in a fatal accident appeared to be drunk. State Police Capt. Daniel Lovato said this week that no officers were available. Both of the officers on duty were working a domestic disturbance call and one had a prisoner.

A manager at Bode’s General Store in Abiquiú had made the call at 5:05 p.m. and reported seeing a Dodge Durango in the parking lot before the crash that killed Richard Vialpando and brothers Alfred Jaramillo and James Jaramillo. The manager had called 911 because one of the occupants of the Durango entered the store and appeared intoxicated.

Vialpando was driving the same vehicle about six hours later when it collided head-on with the car being driven by Alfred Jaramillo. Vialpando’s two passengers survived the crash.

Vialpando is suspected to have been drinking, as numerous beer cans and a vodka bottle were found in his car and on the road. Blood test results confirming whether Vialpando or anyone else involved in the crash was legally intoxicated have not been released. (info from Rio Grande Sun)

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Councilman abused 911 to get ride for drunken friend

The prosecutor reviewing Capitola, California Councilman Kirby Nicol's March 26 call to 911 asking police to give a drunken friend a ride home said Tuesday that public resources were "abused."

A Capitola police officer responded to the 3 a.m. call at Nicol's home and drove Nicol's friend home. Nicol had organized a barbecue and served wine, and neither he nor his friend were in shape to drive.

Assistant District Attorney Andrew Isaac said Tuesday his review is not yet complete, but he has made several findings. He said California Government Code 8314 "clearly applies."

This section states: "It is unlawful for any elected state or local officer, including any state or local appointee employee, or consultant, to use or permit others to use public resources for a campaign activity, or personal or other purposes which are not authorized by law."

The same section of the law states that "incidental and minimal use of public resources" by an elected official "shall not be subject to prosecution." Isaac called Nicol's 911 call more than incidental because it involved the 911 emergency system, the use of a police car and the time of a police officer.

Civil penalties, not criminal, apply, according to Isaac, quoting the code: "Any person who intentionally or negligently violates this section is liable for a civil penalty not to exceed $1,000 for each day on which a violation occurs, plus three times the value of the unlawful use of public resources." Isaac said no decision has been made on whether there was criminal action.

He noted that during the call, Nicol identified himself as the mayor, a position he relinquished in December, but did not claim there was an emergency.

If the district attorney were to prosecute, Isaac said his office would work with city officials to put a value on the public resources expended. A payment would resolve the situation, but if there were a dispute, it could go to court, he added.

Nicol apologized last week when a recording of the 911 call was made public. At Thursday's City Council meeting, he apologized again and said he would reimburse the city. "Everybody know I have admitted to a mistake, and I've apologized for that," said Nicol, declining to comment until the review is complete. "I'm very contrite. I want to do what's right." (info from San Jose Mercury News)

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Crime TV fan called 911 to see real cops in action

Justin Schulze of Woonsocket, Rhode Island faces charges after police said he made a series of phony bomb threats and fake 911 calls earlier this month.

According to police, Schulze called 911 and reported there were bombs at both a theater and a school. Police said Schulze later made calls about a murder and a shooting at the building where he lives.

All of the calls turned out to be unfounded. “He said he wanted to see police and fire respond in real life. He watches a lot of TV and he wanted to see us respond,“ said Det. Sgt. Todd Fernandes of the Woonsocket Police Department.

“At some point we started to realize that the calls were from the same number and the same male was making the those calls, and some officers even believed them to be crank calls at that point. But you have to approach every case like it’s real,“ Fernandes said.

Police were able to trace the 911 calls to a cellphone. Schulze had taken the phone from a friend of his without that person’s knowledge, police said.

Police said Schulze was watching the drama unfold around him from his room, which is near the theater and across from the school.

And though all of the potential emergencies turned out to be false, it doesn’t mean there wasn’t any harm done. “It’s extremely dangerous. It took up to three hours of patrol officers’ time, not to mention the fire department responding with lights and sirens putting other people at risk,“ Fernandes said.

Schulze was being held on $50,000 bail with surety and was ordered to undergo a mental health evaluation. (info from WJAR TV)

Friday, April 24, 2009

Man punched his own face, reported father to 911, and got arrested

During a domestic dispute in Antwerp, New York yesterday, Preston Spencer called 911 about his father, and was arrested for violating an order of protection.

When Sheriff's deputies arrived, Spencer was in the driveway and said he didn't want his dad arrested. Instead, Spencer was arrested for violating an order of protection to stay away from his father.

Spencer's father said the two had argued over whether Spencer's girlfriend would be allowed to visit the home. Spencer head-butted his father, then stood up and punched his own face several times.

His father declined to press any further charges beyond the criminal contempt charge filed by deputies. (info from

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Not a wacky call, but potentially tragic, so read

Early on Wednesday morning, Megan Hester of Volusia County, Florida, decided to leave her house to fill up her gas tank at a convenience store. She left her four- and six-year-old children alone.

When they awoke and realized they were alone, the six-year-old boy called 911 to say that their mother had left them home alone. "Um, mommy left us," the child said to the 911 operator. "It's Megan's son. Mommy left us."

Volusia County deputies said the boy woke up just before 2 a.m. to find his mother gone. That's when the boy called 911 and told the operator that he and his 4-year-old sister were home alone.

"Can you look out the window and tell me if mommy's car is there?" the operator asked the boy. "No, there's no car," he said. "We're out in the garage and there's no car."

The operator kept the child on the line and asked him to turn on a movie to entertain his sister. The boy then told the operator that his sister was scared earlier, but he made her feel better.

"When we were freaked out, I told my sister, 'You need to go to sleep and stay calm until tomorrow. I think she's coming back,'" the boy said.

Hester returned more than half an hour later to find her children in the company of a deputy. The 23-year-old mother said she ran to get gas while the children were sleeping. She said she wasn't gone very long, but the deputy said Hester was gone at least 30 minutes.

Deputies said Hester didn't seem impaired in any way and the house was clean. The children were OK, despite the scare. Hester was charged with felony child neglect. (info from WESH TV)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Man was arrested for three fake 911 calls and went to Al Capone's jail

Yesterday, police in Bartlett, Illinois announced the arrest of a man who they said made three false 911 calls, including one Friday about an armed robbery. Kelly Williams was arrested Friday and charged with three felony counts of disorderly conduct.

Authorities say Williams called police and reported a man with a gun near his home, and that he'd made two similar phone calls with false reports the last two months. Police continue to investigate the motive.

Williams was taken to Cook County Jail and awaits a bond hearing. In 1931, mobster Al Capone was sent to the same jail, but not for crank calls. (info from The Daily Herald and the FBI)

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Man wanted to be with a woman, and dialed 911 to get cop out of his way

James Rush was so smitten with a woman he met last week in a bar in Naperville, Illinois that he called in a phony 911 report of gunfire.

Rush now faces trial on a charge of placing a false 911 call. The police report indicated he did so in the hope officers who were checking on the welfare of a drunken woman would race off to investigate the "gunshots," giving Rush the opportunity to take the woman home.

The incident began shortly before 2 a.m. Thursday, when a patrol officer went to investigate a sport utility vehicle that had stopped in the middle of LaSalle Avenue just east of Route 59 and not far from Breaktime Billiards, a sports bar and grill.

A woman and a man were standing on the pavement next to the SUV and walked away as the officer approached them. The officer quickly caught up with the pair outside a nearby automotive body shop.

The woman was leaning against a wall and the man, later identified as Rush, "was next to her with his arms around her," according to the report. Both appeared to have been drinking, and Rush insisted they were together and would be returning to the bar.

A female employee of the bar approached the officer as Rush and the woman were walking away. The employee said the woman had come to the bar with another man who had since left the premises, and the now-drunken woman "had been going from guy to guy in the bar."

The officer said he watched as the woman began running through a parking lot with Rush in pursuit. "They got to the grassy area along Route 59, and the female was on the ground and the male was down next to her," the officer wrote in the report.

After racing to the scene, the officer offered to call a taxicab for the woman, "and she said to please do so (as) she wanted to go home," the report indicated. She added she did not know Rush and had just met him that evening.

Rush "said he would take her home, and I told him to leave and I would get her home in a cab," the officer wrote. Rush then began walking toward an apartment complex where he lives.

Another bar employee then offered to drive the woman to her home. The two left soon after.

A few minutes later, a police emergency radio dispatcher directed the officer and another patrolman to the intersection of North Aurora Road and Route 59, following a 911 call of six gunshots having been fired there.

Dispatchers tried seven times to reconnect with the 911 caller on his wireless telephone, the report indicated. Police soon determined the phone belonged to Rush.

The officers caught up with Rush, who denied placing the call, even as "the phone in the man's pocket started ringing" with yet another call from the dispatchers, the report stated.

"I again asked him why he called 911, and this time he told me he called in the 911 call to get me out of the area, so he could go back and pick up the girl before the cab came," the officer wrote in the report.(info from the Naperville Sun)

Friday, April 17, 2009

Afer drunk mother threatened death, kid called 911 from back of car

A mother in Boca Raton, Florida was charged with child neglect after she drove drunk with her kids in the car. Palm Beach County Sheriff's deputies arrested Belinda Leighton on Easter Sunday after her son called 911 from the back seat and reported what was happening.

The children, ages 9 and 13, said Leighton spent the morning drinking wine and beer and then decided to go for a drive. At times, they said, she drove faster than 100 mph and came close to hitting a fire truck.

During the ride, Leighton told the kids she "had it" and was going to kill them and herself by crashing the car.

Deputies found Leighton at a friend's house. As deputies questioned her, she requested they take her children and put them in foster care. (info from WPBF TV)

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Confused cops greeted by gun-toter at wrong house after 911 call about gun

Police in Frisco, Texas are reviewing their procedures after officers stormed the wrong house in response to a 911 call about a domestic incident that ended in a murder-suicide over the weekend. Officers found the correct home 12 minutes after the initial 911 call. But by then, William Taylor had shot and killed his wife, Mary Redwine, and himself.

The confusion started when a male caller told a 911 dispatcher that help was needed at 9130 Palace Place, where a 12-year-old girl's father was holding a gun to the girl's mother's head.

But while the house number was correct, the street name was not. The call was made from 4050 Palace Place, but the girl's mother was being held at gunpoint around the corner, at 9130 Apollo Court. Dispatchers issued an alert of a gunshot victim at 4050 Palace Place.

The confusion continued after the girl called 911 after making her way to a neighbor's house and gave her home address again. "Are you sure of the street?" the dispatcher asked the young girl. "Yes, 9130," she replied. "OK, because that's not coming up for me," the dispatcher said.

As police arrived at the house the 911 call was made from, the woman inside mistook the approaching officers for the gunman. Panicked, her husband pulled out his gun, and the woman called 911.

"There's someone trying to get in our house now," the woman told the dispatcher. "He has a gun ... Hurry."

The dispatcher relayed the report to the responding officers, who broke down the door and entered the residence.

"I think the job done was exceptional, and everybody did an outstanding job in their response," Frisco police Public Information Officer Ray Jewitt said. (info from Dallas News)

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Unhappy woman called 911 for a ride to jail

Martha Crooks of Jacksonville Florida was arrested after demanding that officers put her in jail -- and with a last name like Crooks, they were happy to comply.

Crooks called 911 and told dispatchers that she was unhappy with where she was living and that she wanted a ride to jail or the hospital. Dispatchers told her that she should get a taxi if she needed a ride to the hospital and that her call was an inappropriate use of the emergency phone service.

Undaunted, Crooks threatened to continually call 911 until the police complied with her wish. The tactic worked. Crooks was put in the Duval County jail. Court records indicate she has been arrested prior for misuse of the 911 system. Bond was set at $1,503. She's probably in no hurry to leave. (info from The Weekly Vice)

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Boy called 911 for help with math homework

Operator: 911 emergencies.
Boy: Yeah I need some help.
Operator: What’s the matter?
Boy: With my math.
Operator: With your mouth?
Boy: No with my math. I have to do it. Will you help me?
Operator: Sure. Where do you live?
Boy: No with my math.
Operator: Yeah I know. Where do you live though?
Boy: No, I want you to talk to me on the phone.
Operator: No I can’t do that. I can send someone else to help you.
Boy: Okay.
Operator: What kind of math do you have that you need help with?
Boy: I have take aways.
Operator: Oh you have to do the take aways.
Boy: Yeah.
Operator: Alright, what’s the problem?
Boy: Um, you have to help me with my math.
Operator: Okay. Tell me what the math is.
Boy: Okay. 16 take away 8 is what?
Operator: You tell me. How much do you think it is?
Boy: I don’t know, 1.
Operator: No. How old are you?
Boy: I’m only 4.
Operator: 4!
Boy: Yeah.
Operator: What’s another problem, that was a tough one.
Boy: Um, oh here’s one. 5 take away 5.
Operator: 5 take away 5 and how much do you think that is?
Boy: 5.
Woman: Johnny what do you think you’re doing?!
Boy: The policeman is helping me with my math.
Woman: What did I tell you about going on the phone?
Operator: It’s the mother…
Boy: You said if I need help to call somebody.
Woman: I didn’t mean the police.

(info from Entertonement (CLICK to hear recording).

Monday, April 13, 2009

Man arrested for 37 minutes of wacky 911 calls

Lester Thurman of Bryan, Texas was charged with making abusive 911 calls. He made at least eight calls on Saturday, and officers responded at least four times. One call was because his cellphone charger was missing.

Other reasons for the 911 calls were: a theft that happened months ago, a person preventing him from closing the bedroom door, and someone talking about him on the other line.

One of the officers who responded remembered Thurmon from a call in January. Police said he called them to say his roommate had taken his food away and he couldn't eat. (info from KBTX)

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Insufficient shrimp? Call 911

Recently we've heard of 911 complaint calls about McDonald's and a pizza place.

Now it's time for a Chinese restaurant to cause a call to the cops.

On Monday, a woman in Hamtom City, Texas called 911 to report she didn't get as much shrimp as she wanted in her fried rice at a restaurant.

In the taped emergency call the customer asked the dispatcher, "to get a police officer up here, what has to happen?" The customer also said: "He didn't even put extra shrimp in there." The upset customer was gone when an officer arrived.

Restaurant workers say the woman had been denied a refund after leaving with her order, then returning to complain. Cook June Lee said there was nothing wrong with the meal, and that "some customers are happy. Some are not." (info from

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Drunk called 911 for ride to detox, and opened a beer in cop car

A man called 911 in Tampa, Florida several times Sunday night to say he was drunk and needed a ride to an alcohol detoxification center. An operator said police would come to the man and that he should stop calling 911.

An officer drove to the specified address and the caller got into the car for the ride to detox. During the trip, the man opened a beer in the back seat of the police car.

Police charged James Ayers Jr. with misuse of the wireless 911 system. He also was ticketed for possession of an open alcohol container. His bail was set at $500. (info from Tampa Bay Online)

Monday, April 6, 2009

911 operator helped woman open car door

A woman who thought she was locked inside her car was helped to escape by a 911 dispatcher in Kissimmee, Florida last week.

“My car will not start, I'm locked inside my car. I cannot open my car. I can't get the windows down,” the caller said. “Nothing electrical works. And it's getting very hot in here and I'm not feeling well. And I need some help.”

The dispatcher told the woman she should be “able to pull the lock up on the door even if it’s electrical.”

The caller said she tried that, but she tried again and was able to unlock the door and get out. (info from Central Florida News, photo from

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Drug buyers busted after calling 911

On Tuesday night, two people who were in Cincinatti suburb Lincoln Heights, Ohio to buy Oxycontin illegally, called 911 after they were ripped off in the transaction.

Police say they were called for a report of trouble. Once there, they were greeted by a man and a woman who stated they were robbed by a man who drove away from the scene.

After further investigation, Tiffany Dople admitted to police she was there to buy 60 Oxycontin pills. Police searched her and discovered 10 unknown pills on her. Dople said she was going to pay $25 a piece for the pills, leading her to lose $1,725 to the suspect who drove away.

Police also arrested James Carver at the scene. Carver told officers he was "buying the pills when the subject took his money."

Both are charged with felony drug possession. The pills allegedly found on Dople have been sent away for testing.

Police took a statement from Carver on the man who allegedly robbed them.

A judge set his bond at $5,000. Dople was released on her own recognizance. (info from

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Woman couldn't reach 911 with cellphone or landline

A woman in Arizona says she has a cellphone for one reason and that's just in case she ever has an emergency she can dial 911. However, when she had an emergency, she couldn't get through to 911.

"I couldn't believe it, I was running around like a crazy person," Lori Rodriguez said. "I was hollering at my mother-in-law, 'Call them. Call them!'"

Rodriguez said she endured one of the scariest times in her life. Her son had gone into a severe seizure and stopped breathing. "He started acting all nervous like he was getting sick, and he does have a history of seizures, and he just stopped breathing and he was turning blue!" Rodriguez said.

Rodriguez said she immediately called 911.

"I dialed 911 and I received a recording that said, 'You've reached the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office. If this is an emergency, please hang up and dial 911,'" Rodriguez said.

But, this was an emergency and she did dial 911. In fact, Rodriguez says she dialed 911 not only from her cellphone but also her landline. Both lines are provided by T-Mobile.

"Before I even signed the papers for it I said to them, 'I have a disabled son that has seizures. I've had to call 911 on several occasions,'" Rodriguez said. "And they assured me there would not be an issue, 911 does work with their service."

But Rodriguez claims she just couldn't get through during her emergency so she had to run to get help from a neighbor. "I tried to go in their house, but it was locked so I was pounding on the door," she said.

Fortunately, things turned out OK for her son, but she still wanted to know why her two T-Mobile lines couldn't get through to 911.

So, she called T-Mobile. "For three days I was on the phone with them," Rodriguez said. "I spoke to 10 different people and nobody would help me." "He could have died!" Rodriguez said. "I mean, they had to give him oxygen."

In a written statement, T-Mobile said, "We regret the difficulties experienced by the Rodriguez family. T-Mobile is communicating directly with her and with public safety representatives to determine what occurred and what steps can be taken by all parties to address this issue in the future." (info from Arizona Family)

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Chicago 911 calls are disappearing

Stacked-up calls to Chicago's 911 emergency center are "disappearing completely" from computer screens because of glitches in a $6 million upgrade to the dispatch system.

Just last month, Mayor Daley showcased the upgrade, which lets call takers and dispatchers see real-time video from surveillance cameras within 150 feet of any 911 call.

But then problems started cropping up, apparently tied to the computers installed three weeks ago as part of the upgrade. Calls that are "stacked" because police officers are responding to higher-priority calls have been "disappearing completely" from computer screens, sources said.

"They simply vanish and no record can be recalled or found," said a 911 call taker who asked to remain anonymous for fear of retribution. "I would not want my family to call needing the police and expecting the police to show up only to find out the call has disappeared from the system completely."

The city was promised that its on-screen mapping system would show railroad crossings to assist in rerouting emergency vehicles. But that hasn't happened.

Jennifer Martinez, a spokeswoman for the Office of Emergency Management and Communications, characterized the vanishing calls as a "display issue." She insisted that no "Priority One" calls are ever stacked and that no calls have gone unanswered.

"It's a minor issue with stacked calls. It's not that they disappear. It's just the display. If there's three jobs, you may only see one. But, they remain on the system, and dispatchers are still sending those jobs out," she said. "We haven't lost any of the records. The record remains in the system."

As for the railroad crossing problem, Martinez acknowledged that "only a handful" of work stations have the upgrade. "It's being rolled out in a phased approach," she said.

The computer problems are reminiscent of those that followed the 1995 opening of Chicago's 911 center. Burned before by a faulty computer-aided dispatch system, the Chicago Fire Department waited a year to move into the 911 center and continued to dispatch emergency vehicles manually for months after they got there because of computer software problems.

"Any time you do any computer upgrades, you experience some issues," Martinez said Thursday. "Considering this is the first major upgrade they've done in 10 years, they've been extremely pleased with the technology." (photo & info from the Chicago Sun-Times)

Monday, March 30, 2009

Drunk woman was arrested for calling 911 and asking to be arrested

A woman in Tampa, Florida who called police because her roommate took her beer out of her hand ended up with both hands in handcuffs

Evon Cavett called police around 2:30 a.m. Thursday. When they arrived, she was drinking a 40-ounce bottle of Bud Light. Confused, she told officers she hadn't called them. She then admitted she'd consumed six 16-ounce beers and planned to drink more. Officers assured her she had called, and left.

Cavett called 911 again at 2:46 a.m. to ask why officers arrived at her house and complained that she had never called them before. "I called y'all about five or six hours ago 'cuz a drug deal was going down," she slurred. The operator assured Cavett she had called just 10 minutes ago.

The same officers returned to Cavett's apartment to warn about misusing the 911 system. They told her that if she called again without an emergency, she'd be arrested.

After the officers left, Cavett called again at 3:02 a.m. and told the 911 operator, "Come arrest me!" And the cops did.

She screamed profanities when officers ordered her to stand and put down the beer. Officers took the drink away, stood her up, cuffed her and led her out of the building while she screamed.

Cavett was charged with misuse of the 911 system, resisiting arrest and disorderly conduct. "We arrested her because we wanted to deter others from abusing the 911 system," police spokeswoman Janelle McGregor said. "We need officers available for real emergencies." (info from

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Bank robber called 911 and got arrested

Police caught a bumbling bank robber in Bridgeport, Connecticut who crashed his getaway car and fled by bus and taxi, then made it home and found his roommate dead.

On the morning of January 29, David Maksimik made off with about $3,700 from a branch of People's United Bank in Darien after showing a teller a gun and a fake grenade strapped to his waist. Police found the stolen money after Maksimik called 911 to report his roommate’s apparent suicide in Stamford.

Maksimik appeared before a federal magistrate in Bridgeport on Tuesday to face a robbery charge. He's already accused of robbery and several other crimes in state court for the same incident.

Police say after he held up the bank, he rear-ended another car fleeing the robbery. Maksimik didn’t make it home until he got rides on a bus, in a taxi and in his sister's car.

Maksimik found his roommate dead and called 911. Police responding to the suicide saw that he matched the description of the robbery suspect and found the bank money inside a bag on Maksimik’s bed.

"Everything just came together," Darien police Capt. Fred Komm said. "It's rare that you solve a bank robbery in such a timely manner. We got lucky, and he was having a bad day."

Tom Carson, a spokesman for the US attorney's office, declined to say why federal prosecutors are bringing their own case against Maksimik. It was not clear whether state officials will drop their case because of the federal prosecution.

Maksimik is being held without bail. The federal robbery charge carries up to 20 years in prison. (info from Kansas City Star and The Associated Press)

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Man told 911 his wife was biting him

A woman in Fairfield, Connecticut with marital problems desperately wanted to talk to her husband after he apparently decided to leave her. Helen Sun was arrested Tuesday after sneaking into Robert Drawbough's bedroom and handcuffing herself to him while he slept so they could talk.

His wife began biting and scratching him. Drawbough, frightened by his wife's antics, was able to pin her down and used a cellphone to call 911 and begged the dispatcher for help. (Info from CBS News)

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Time for a change: a report about farting, not 911

An eighth-grader in Lakeland, Florida was suspended from riding the school bus for three days after being accused of farting.

The bus driver wrote on a misbehavior form that a 15-year-old was passing gas on the bus to make the other children laugh, creating a stench so bad that it was difficult to breathe.

Polk County school officials said there's no rule against flatulence, but there are rules against causing a disturbance on the bus.

The teen said he wasn't the farter.

Whether he did it or not, he might have gotten off easy. A 13-year-old student at a Stuart, Florida school was arrested in November after authorities said he farted in class. (info from The Associated Press)

Monday, March 23, 2009

Greatest wacko calls

A call came into 911 because two couples were going to share a hotel room and there weren't enough towels.

A lady called 911 because of a fight going on in a parking lot. When asked to describe the combatants, she said: "There's one man, and he's dressed like Elvis. He's kicking another man who's laying on the ground and screaming "You ain't nothing but a hound dog."

A man called and requested police call gas stations on all exits of I-95 to find out which ones were open.

A woman called 911 to report she had seen a wild mouse in her house.

Someone called 911 to report the parrot got out of his cage and is in a tree outside.

A man broke up with his girlfriend and wanted police to go over to her house and report to him the owners of any cars, other than hers, in her driveway.

A guy called to ask if they delivered dope. When the person answering told him it was the Sheriff's Department, he hung up.

A woman called to request a police officer come to her residence to change the battery in her smoke detector because she couldn't reach it.

A person called to find out the number to the police station.

Dispatcher: 911 What is your emergency?
Caller: I heard what sounded like gunshots coming from the brown house on the corner.
Dispatcher: Do you have an address?
Caller: No, I have on a blouse and slacks, why?

Dispatcher: 911 What is your emergency?
Caller: Someone broke into my house and took a bite out of my ham and cheese sandwich.
Dispatcher: Excuse me?
Caller: I made a ham and cheese sandwich and left it on the kitchen table and when I came back from the bathroom, someone had taken a bite out of it.
Dispatcher: Was anything else taken?
Caller: No, but this has happened to me before and I'm sick and tired of it!

Caller: Yeah, I'm having trouble breathing. I'm all out of breath. Darn....I think I'm going to pass out.
Dispatcher: Sir, where are you calling from?
Caller: I'm at a pay phone. North and Foster.
Dispatcher: Sir, an ambulance is on the way. Are you an asthmatic?
Caller: No
Dispatcher: What were you doing before you started having trouble breathing?
Caller: Running from the Police.

Dispatcher: 911 What is the nature of your emergency?
Caller: I'm trying to reach nine eleven but my phone doesn't have an eleven on it.
Dispatcher: This is nine eleven.
Caller: I thought you just said it was nine-one-one
Dispatcher: Yes, ma'am nine-one-one and nine-eleven are the same thing.
Caller: Honey, I may be old, but I'm not stupid

Friday, March 20, 2009

911 employee quits after email hoax about gang crime

A 911 employee in Newton County, Georgia resigned after reportedly sending out an e-mail to friends and family members about a supposed gang initiation at Wal-Mart Wednesday evening. The e-mail created a panic throughout the community.

The e-mail warned that Newton County Police had advised dispatchers that a gang initiation would be starting in Newton and surrounding counties Wednesday night and would last 24-hours.

"Word is that those trying to get into two local gangs are to go into Wal-Mart and kill a man, woman or child and get out," the e-mail reads. It goes on to urge citizens to avoid the store for at least 24-hours, if not longer.

Police officials released a statement Wednesday afternoon after receiving and influx of calls, which read, in part, "We have been diligently investigating this particular e-mail and, as of yet, have not found it to have any validity. We have also been made aware of similar e-mails circulating in other parts of this state as well as other states. As of yet, those e-mails have also not been found to be credible. We will continue to investigate this claim to ensure the safety of our citizens. However, at this time, we find this e-mail to have no merit. As always, if a safety concern arises, we will make every effort to alert our citizens."

And although the gang initiation portion of the e-mail proved false, the claim that a 911 employee had provided the information proved to be true. According to Mike Smith, director of the Covington-Newton County 911 Center, there was a trainee at the center who received the information and chose to pass it on. The information was not given by 911 officials and passing along such information is against policy and procedures of the 911 center.

The trainee apparently sent the information to a spouse who passed the information along to a family member and the rumor spread from there.

"This employee has chosen to tender a resignation effective immediately," said Smith. "If such information were received by us and deemed a credible threat then an official notification would be sent to the public as well as other public safety agencies." (info from The Covington News)

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Delayed 911 rsponse may have caused death

Police in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada admitted yesterday their slow response to a 911 call on a cold December night may have cost Jonathan Guitard his life.

"We failed to provide adequate attention and care to Mr. Guitard, and in this case it was life-saving aid," police chief Jamie Graham said in a media briefing yesterday. "Our lack of immediate attention to him may have contributed to his death."

Guitard died Dec. 13, more than four hours after a security guard found him unconscious.

Graham said the initial call came in at 4 a.m., but the civilian complaint-taker on duty at the time asked few questions and entered the call in the detachment's priority "queue" as an "unwanted" person. A designation of "man down" dispatcher jargon for an urgent medical emergency would have prompted an immediate response, he said.

"Normally a call like that would be treated as a high priority," Graham said.

A supervisor went to the reported location around 5 a.m., but despite coming within "50 feet" of the location, was unable to find Guitard and returned to the station. Chief Graham said the initial search was hampered by the complaint-taker's sketchy information.

The security guard called police again when he came across Guitard around 6:30 a.m. He was rushed to hospital by ambulance but efforts to revive him were unsuccessful.

Graham said yesterday's statement was prompted by the findings of an autopsy report on Mr. Guitard's death that was released last Thursday. Temperatures in Victoria were well below freezing on the night in question. The department has launched an internal investigation to determine whether any criminal or procedural negligence contributed to Guitard's death.

Chief Graham said he has called Guitard's mother to offer the department's apologies and sympathies. A member of the police department was also sent to Montreal to speak with her personally. (info from the Globe and Mail)

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

It was a gas lamp, not a burning building

In New Orleans, a woman called 911 to report flames in the apartment building across the street.

The emergency responders saw no fire, heard no alarm, found no panicky people in the street, nothing wrong inside the building.

The caller came outside from the hotel across the street and pointed to the 100-year-old gas lamps, which still burn on both sides of the front entrance.

"That can't be safe, will you put it out?," she asked.

A fireman responded, "No ma'am that's supposed to do that." (info from

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Teen urged father to kill burglar while talking to 911

Early yesterday morning in Georgetown, Kentucky a father and his 16-year old son held a man at gunpoint after he kicked in the door of their town home

The teen called 911. "Oh my God, shoot, shoot him dad," he said while on the phone.

For four minutes, they held two guns on 18-year old Josh Slone, a neighbor.

"He kicked in the back door and now we have 'em at gunpoint," the son said. The father said, "If you move one foot, I will kill you at the count of three."

Police arrived and arrested Slone. He was charged with burglary and criminal mischief.

Now for the really strange part. About two hours later, there was another sound at the door. It was Slone's cousin, Thomas trying to kick in the door.

The father and son grabbed their guns again, and police arrived and arrested him on the front porch.

Police aren't sure why they picked the house, but believe they were so drunk, they didn't know where they were. Josh Slone lives a few houses down from the one he is accused of breaking into. (info from

Monday, March 16, 2009

Woman called 911 to confess prostitution

Paul Manning, a 911 dispatcher at the Regional Public Safety Communications Center in Ashland, Kentucky got a call from a woman whom he initially thought had mistaken him for a priest.

“She wanted to confess that she’d been prostituting herself for drug money,” he said.

Apparently, Manning said, she confessed because a friend was threatening to turn her in “and she wanted to know if she could get in trouble for that.” (info from The Daily Independent)

Friday, March 13, 2009

Woman told 911 she killed her former husband

A woman called 911 in Dallas about 4:15 a.m. Monday and reported that she'd killed her ex-husband in San Antonio Sunday night. She also said she'd just taken a handful of pills. She was taken to a hospital and her three children are in the custody of Child Protective Services. (info from The Houston Chronicle)

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Woman was bored, so she called 911

Police said a woman in Slidell, Louisiana made two false calls to 911 from an out-of-service cellphone — and told investigators she did it because she was bored. They booked her on Monday for false report of a fire and false report of a crime. They also booked her on two outstanding warrants for violating probation.

Police Chief Freddy Drennan said the two calls gave different addresses in the same area. Police answered a burglary call and police and firefighters answered the fire call.

Officers questioned a woman in a nearby yard. She denied making the calls at first, then admitted making them out of boredom. (info from The Associated Press)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

911 caller had gun shot wound, not heart attack

A man in Morgan County, Indiana died Monday after complaining of chest pain, but he didn't realize that he had been shot.

The man's wife called 911. When emergency personnel arrived at their home, they realized the man had a gunshot wound. He died on the way to the hospital.

Investigators said the man was standing in his bedroom when he started feeling chest pain. A bullet hole was found in the side of the house.

Neighbors said they often hear gunshots from the nearby woods. Police said they don't know where the bullet came from or who fired it. (info from WLKY)

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

An emergency emergency. For second time in two weeks, 911 wires cut in Arkansas

Construction of a parking lot near the Saline County 911 Building in Benton, Arkansas made it necessary to re-route calls Monday after workmen accidentally cut the communication lines.

All emergency calls were patched through, so there was no danger in someone not getting emergency services.

A similar incident occurred last week and the same emergency procedure was used then to temporarily correct the situation. (info from The Courier)

Monday, March 9, 2009

Multimom says hormones made her freak out in 911 call. Second publicist quits.

Mother-of-14 Nadya Suleman says a hormonal surge drove her to make a wacky 911 call when one of her children wandered off last year.

Suleman says she was right to call 911 when her 5-year-old son went missing, but she overreacted because she was pregnant with her octuplets and her hormones were out of control.

In the Oct. 27 call Suleman repeatedly told an emergency dispatcher she was going crazy and she was going to kill herself. The boy returned unharmed.

Suleman, an unemployed single mother, has come under scrutiny since giving birth to octuplets Jan. 26 because she already had six other children, ages 2 to 7.

For the second time, Suleman is without a publicist.

Victor Munoz said that he quit as Suleman's publicity person. "This woman is nuts. It just got to be too much," he said. "It's pretty much a free for all over there right now. They are freaking out right now. "Nadya got real greedy." he added.

Suleman's first publicist, Joann Killeen, stepped down after her firm received over 100 graphic e-mail and voicemail threats. (info from Fox News and US magazine)

Friday, March 6, 2009

Intruder wandered around house as 911 calls were unanswered

An elderly woman in Parker County, Texas repeatedly called 911 and got no answer while an intruder roamed around her home.

Last month, Laverne Hokett awoke to the sound of a man breaking down her back door. "It's a thousand wonders I haven't had a heart attack," she said. "I was so afraid."

After dialing 911 several times with no answer as she cowered in her bedroom, Hokett called her daughter, Deborah Turpin, who lives nearby and then tried 911 again. By this time the man inside her home was screaming.

As Turpin and her husband headed to her mother's home, Hokett sat alone in her dark room and decided to call her neighbor. "He couldn't find the bullets to the gun," she said of her neighbor.

Turpin and her husband eventually made it to Hokett's home and managed to corner the intruder at gunpoint. They then tried to call 911 again, and then again.

"I'm very frustrated," Turpin said. "I'm very angry." As the situation hurtled towards a crisis point, the phone rang.

"This is Parker County 911," a dispatcher said. "Your phone is dialing 911, is there an emergency?"

"Someone's broken into my mother's home," Turpin replied. "I'm sitting here with a gun on him and if he doesn't behave I'm going to kill him ... We've both got guns on him. He's sitting here crying and bawling."

Deputies arrived 13 minutes later and arrested the intruder.

Captain Mike Morgan, a spokesman for the Parker County Sheriff's Office, said he understands the family's frustration, but records showed 911 dispatchers did answer the calls. However, by the time they answered, the callers had already hung up. Morgan said cellphone calls can take up to 30 seconds to actually connect in the dispatch center.

Hokett said she hopes she never needs 911 again. But just in case, she said her daughter bought her a shotgun that she keeps near her bed as she sleeps. (info from WFAA TV)

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Woman called 911 when Mickey Dee ran out of McNuggets

In the popular lexicon, the phrase "A few McNuggets short of a Happy Meal" has joined "A few ants short of a picnic," "a few beers short of a six-pack," and "a few cards short of a full deck" to imply that someone may not have normal brain power.

There is new proof of the aptness of the McNuggets analogy.

When she was told that McDonald's was out of Chicken McNuggets after paying for a 10-piece order, a woman in Fort Pierce, Florida called 911.


"This is an emergency, If I would have known they didn't have McNuggets, I wouldn't have given my money, and now she wants to give me a McDouble, but I don't want one," Latreasa Goodman later told police. "This is an emergency."

The McNugget incident ended with Goodman getting a notice to appear on a misuse of 911 charge.

Goodman told investigators she tried to get a refund for the 10-piece McNuggets, but the cashier told her all sales are final.

"I called 911 because I couldn't get a refund, and I wanted my McNuggets," Goodman told police. The cashier told police she offered Goodman a larger portion of food for the same price to make up for it, but said Goodman got "irate." Goodman reportedly yelled, "I don't want a McDouble and small fry," the cashier told investigators.

911 dispatchers said Goodman called them three times and on each occasion she was told an officer was en route. "Goodman maintained the attitude 'this is an emergency, my McNuggets are an emergency,'" the report states.

Although Goodman did go a bit to ofar in calling 911, she did have a legitimate beef over her intended chicken purchase.

McDonald's is now trying to make nice with her.

Carlos Solorzano, Florida Region Operations Manager, said that "Satisfying each and every customer that visits our restaurants is very important to us. Regarding this isolated incident, we apologize for the inconvenience caused. In the event that we are unable to fill an order, a customer should be offered the choice of a full refund or alternative menu items. We regret that in this instance, that wasn't the case. We want to correct our mistake. We will be sending the customer her refund, along with an Arch card for a complimentary meal on us. We never want to disappoint a McNuggets fan or any McDonald's customer. Customer satisfaction is our top priority."

HEAR THE CALL (info from

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Michigan 911 defeats Michigan 311

For six months members of the Michigan Emergency Telephone Service Committee and state 911 Committee have argued against their 311 number, which was established in2003. This week they ruled that dispatch centers must discontinue using it.

The 311 number was intended to direct non-emergency calls -- barking dog complaints, questions about road closures and the like -- away from 911 operators. However, the number "really never caught on and never got to the popularity level we thought it would," said Tom McIntyre, Saginaw County 911 Communications Center Authority director. Also, neither cellphones nor those using VoIP would connect to the number.

"We got about 1,000 calls a month (on 311)," McIntyre said. About 30,000 calls come into 911 each month. "People will just have to call 911," McIntyre said. "If they want, they can always use our alternative, seven-digit non-emergency number, 797-4580." (info from The Saginaw News)

Monday, March 2, 2009

Car thief was busted after bragging to 911

A man in Duluth, Minnesota was arrested for stealing a car and repeatedly calling 911 to brag to police that they would not catch him.

Antonio Robledo was suspected of stealing gas from a gas station and fleeing in a stolen car and was captured after an hours-long search early Saturday.

“The suspect apparently was unaware of the tenacity of the police officers involved as they braved frigid temperatures tracking the suspect in the snow, on foot and with a police dog,” a Duluth Police Department news release said. The low temperature in the area reached 18 below zero.

Robledo was booked on charges of gas theft, possession of a stolen vehicle, burglary, tampering with a motor vehicle, trespassing and assaulting a police officer.

Duluth police gave the following account of this weekend’s events: On Friday evening, police responded to a report of a gas theft at the Holiday station on 27th Avenue West. Station employees gave police a license plate number and a description of the vehicle, which turned out to have been stolen from the Lincoln Park/West End neighborhood.

About 2 a.m. Saturday, a Duluth officer spotted the vehicle — a black 2000 Audi — near Lake Avenue and Superior Street. The officer stopped the vehicle near the on-ramp to northbound Interstate 35, but then the driver sped off, hitting a guardrail while entering the on-ramp and turning off the Audi’s lights.

Officers searched for the vehicle, and located it abandoned in a yard. Soon after, the suspect began calling 911 from a cellphone, telling dispatchers that he was “smarter than the police” and would not be captured.

About 4:30 a.m., a homeowner called 911 to report a prowler had entered their garage. Police were conducting their search nearby and within minutes, officers located Robledo in a shed in a yard. Robledo resisted arrest and assaulted two officers, according to police, though “neither sustained significant injury.”

Robledo’s criminal history includes convictions for theft of a motor vehicle and fleeing a police officer in a motor vehicle. He has also been charged with financial transaction card fraud and with fifth-degree assault. Robledo was arrested in October 2007 in connection with the string of home burglaries just after crashing a stolen black Audi. (info from The Duluth News Tribune)

Friday, February 27, 2009

Cop arrested after 911 call by ex-wife

A woman saying she was the ex-wife of Raleigh, North Carolina Police Officer Andrew Caruana told a 911 dispatcher that her bedroom was destroyed during a fight that led to Caruana's being charged with assault.

At about 9:30 a.m. Tuesday, officers answered a call about a domestic-related disturbance in an upscale apartment complex.

During the 911 call, the woman told authorities her ex-husband was assaulting a man at her apartment. The woman said part of the fight occurred in the bedroom, where she said the window was broken and her bed was destroyed. “Somebody went through the window … or fell into the window. The drywall’s broken,” she said during the call.

A young child can be heard in the background throughout the call. A man can also be heard in the background screaming expletives.

The woman told a 911 dispatcher that she and her son were hiding in the bathroom while the fight was taking place. At one point, she told the dispatcher that her ex-husband had kicked down the bathroom door. He later went outside.

As a result of the investigation stemming from the 911 call, Caruana was taken into custody Tuesday evening at police headquarters. He was charged with assault, assault by pointing a gun and communicating threats, and was transported to jail. (info from

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Ohio Sherriff loses 911 lawsuit

The Ohio Fifth Circuit Court has ruled that the Delaware County commissioners have control over the county’s public safety communications system, ending an ongoing lawsuit for which the county was paying for attorneys on both sides of the dispute.

A three-judge panel ruled in favor of the commissioners this week, rejecting the arguments of attorneys representing Delaware County Sheriff Walter L. Davis III.

Former county sheriff Al Myers had sued the commissioners in October 2006 for control of the system. In his initial court filing, Myers said by denying him control, the commissioners were preventing him from performing his duty under Ohio law. The commissioners have maintained their emergency management division should have the right to administer the system.

Davis inherited the lawsuit after he was appointed to office in 2007 and decided to continue forward with it. As with Davis, none of the three current commissioners were in office when the lawsuit was initially filed.

Commissioner Todd Hanks said the court’s ruling “vindicated” the board. “It’s my position that the stance taken by the previous administration was the correct position,” Hanks said. “The only ones who have made out here in the long run are the lawyers.”

The county prosecutor’s office usually represents county entities in legal matters, but it asked to be taken off the case in order to avoid a conflict of interest since the office represents both the sheriff and the commissioners.

The appeals court agreed with that request, ordering an outside law firm to be assigned as special prosecutor for the sheriff, and that the firm be paid $150 an hour for its services. The court at that time also appointed a firm to represent the commissioners at $200 an hour. The court at that time further ordered that the commissioners pay for all legal expenses in the case, including the sheriff’s.

The county has since paid just over $142,600 in legal fees associated with the case, according to public records requests.

Monday’s ruling ordered that the costs be equally shared by both sides.

Davis, who had argued that the sheriff’s office was best equipped to manage emergency communication, said that he believed the resolution to the case was a “positive decision for the citizens of Delaware County, who have paid enough for political infighting.”

“Parties that were continuously fighting about this issue have now come to the table to talk. I believe we are all focused on increasing communications and efficiency,” he said.

Both sides said that now that the court case is done, they would sit down and work out how the emergency communications system will be run.

The dispute centered on an exemption in Ohio law that allows county commissioners to maintain control of county emergency communications if they provided public safety communications to cities, townships, villages and other entities within the county before a March 15, 1993 cutoff date. Because the county has maintained a 911 service since before the cutoff date, the commissioners argued the board qualified for the exemption.

Attorneys for the sheriff had argued that a countywide public safety communications system did not exist until 2006 — well after the cutoff date — when the county’s current radio system went online. However, the three-judge panel disagreed. The 911 center, the court ruled, fulfilled the legal definition of a “communications facility” as laid out in Ohio law.

“The exception does not hinge on a particular quality of service or quality of service,” Ohio Fifth Circuit Judge Sheila G. Farmer in the eight-page ruling. Thus, the sheriff “cannot demonstrate and has not demonstrated a clear legal right” to control emergency communications, Farmer wrote.

The fact that the lawsuit was filed by a former sheriff against three commissioners who are no longer in office complicated the situation, Hanks said.

“I think the lawyers were the only people who knew what was going on,” Hicks joked.(info from The Delaware Gazette)

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Senior citizen called 911 about lost time

Recently in Connecticut when the clocks in an assisted living community were set ahead for Daylight Saving Time, one of the residents called 911 to report that an hour was missing from her clock.

The police then called the main desk of the institution to inquire about the stolen hour.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

It could cost $500 for a 911 call to be taken down from Pikes Peak

The trail up Colorado's Pikes Peak is a tough 12.6-mile climb, rising up 7,500 feet. Some people make it to the top but call 911 for a ride down.

Pikes Peak Highway officials want the Colorado Springs City Council to approve a $500 per-person charge to bring down the increasing number of people who call 911 from the summit and aren't injured, but just don't want to hike down the 14,115-foot peak.

"Some of the people just say, ‘I want to get to the top of this mountain,' and they don't realize they have to get back down," highway manager Jack Glavan said. The U.S. Forest Service owns the land, but the city runs the toll road.

The $500 fee reflects the cost for employees who have already gone home to come back and drive the 19 miles up the mountain, fighting fierce night-time winds and sometimes snow. If they have to plow or call in more people, the fee could be higher.

Under the proposed fee schedule, hikers who call for a ride before workers have gone home would pay $100 each, and hikers who ask for transport from one location to another during regular hours will be charged $20 each.

Glavan said highway rangers and employees aren't trying to become taxis, but they need a fee schedule to get reimbursed from the increasing number of hikers who apparently get summit fever and find themselves high and dry, which happened to five people last year.
Glavan said the council's action would formalize the fees and encourage hikers to plan better. Glavan said. the city will put signs at the base of Barr Trail and at Barr Camp, about halfway up the trail, warning hikers the summit may be deserted after a certain time of day and that a $500 fee will be charged if they call to be rescued. (info from the Colorado Springs Gazette.)

Monday, February 23, 2009

Drunk driver called 911 to report huimself

State police in western Pemnsylvania arrested a man on Saturday after he called 911 to report that he was driving away from a tavern but was going to pull over because he had drunk too much to drive safely.

Troopers found John Wilson in the parking lot of a gas station in Sligo, a tiny town with fewer than 300 households, at 12:45 a.m..

A trooper said this in his report on the incident: "(Mr.Wilson) related that he had left the bar and was on his way home when he realized he was too drunk to make it home." Police said charges that could include driving under the influence will be filed after results of a blood-alcohol test are known. (info from Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

Friday, February 20, 2009

911 Prank call caused high school lockdown

A reported home invasion robbery and shooting in Loxahatchee, Florida that put Seminole Ridge High School on lockdown on February 18th turned out to be a prank, according to Palm Beach County sheriff's officials.

"It appears to be completely a hoax," said Lt. Shane Cioffi after deputies searched a home and found nothing. A Spanish-speaking caller phoned the county's multilingual 911 line at 2:11 p.m. and told dispatchers that people were breaking into the home on Orange Grove Boulevard and that the people living in the home were shooting at their intruders.

The house is on a road right behind the school. School was due to let out at 2:50 p.m., but students were kept inside.

More than 20 deputies showed up and set up a perimeter around the house. They entered the home and found nobody inside and no sign of a robbery or shooting. The lockdown lasted for at least 20 minutes before students were released.

Cioffi said a hoax like the 911 call, which is itself a crime, could put deputies and the public who is in the area in danger by sending deputies into a situation where they expect to encounter somebody who is armed. "It's potentially deadly," Cioffi said. (info from the Palm Beach Post)