A Utah nurse says she was assaulted and illegally arrested after she stood up to a police officer's request for a patient's blood which he apparently didn't have permission to take.
The arrest of Alex Wubbels, a 41-year-old nurse at Salt Lake City's University Hospital, was filmed by Salt Lake City police officer Jeff Payne's body camera on July 26, according to The Salt Lake Tribune.
The shocking video shows Payne apparently getting frustrated with Wubbels's refusal to allow the blood draw before abruptly grabbing her, putting handcuffs on her and pushing her out of the hospital while she screams as her colleagues watch.
In the video, Payne is demanding a blood sample from an unconscious patient who is suspected of drunken driving. Wubbels, who is on the phone with an apparent supervisor, is shown telling Payne she can't give him blood unless the patient is under arrest, the officer has a warrant or the patient gives consent. Payne is shown acknowledging that none of these situations is the case.
"OK, so I take it, without those in place, I'm not going to get blood?" Payne asks Wubbels in the video after she reads him the agreement made between University Hospital and the Salt Lake City Police Department.
After a few more seconds, Payne lunges at Wubbels and tells her, "You're done. You're under arrest."
Wubbels is shown screaming, "No! ... This isn't OK!" as Payne grabs her and puts handcuffs on her wrists in the hospital corridor.
Payne says Wubbels was interfering in a criminal investigation but she eventually was not charged with any crime after the dramatic arrest.
Wubbels told The Salt Lake Tribune she feels she was assaulted and illegally arrested by Payne but she hasn't pressed charges or filed a lawsuit yet.
She said she thinks the video shows that police officers regularly try to intimidate and bully healthcare workers. “I can’t sit on this video and not attempt to speak out both to re-educate and inform,” she told the newspaper.
As of Friday morning, Payne remained on duty with the Salt Lake City Police Department.
Before she was a nurse, Wubbels was an Olympic athlete, competing in the 1998 and 2002 Winter Olympics when her name was Alex Shaffer.