Detective Jeff Payne is a jerk.
Long story short, Detective Payne wanted blood from an unconscious person not under arrest or in custody. In the ED, in full view of the staff, and with body camera rolling, he argued with charge nurse Alex Wubbles about whether or not he was going to “get my blood or not.”
This happened a lot in rural New Mexico. State Police would demand we draw blood, we would tell them to go pack sand. If they wanted blood they need to get it from the hospital and with a warrant.
There are a boat load of comments being fired back and forth between medics and cops about this story, from “Why doesn’t she just do it and be done” to “Why didn’t he arrest her sooner?”
The specifics of the situation, at first report, were that the patient was conscious and not a suspect in the collision under investigation. That’s easy, he doesn’t give consent, no blood draw.
Then we found out he was unconscious and the term “implied consent” started getting thrown around. We in EMS used implied consent to treat the unconscious assuming that, if they were conscious, they’d want help. We can’t assume the patient would consent to the search of his body, which is what Utah considers a blood draw according to various sources, so that’s out.
Detective Payne, we then learn, is also a phlebotomist. OK, so he went to a few weeks of night school to draw blood. Still can’t take it without consent or placing him under arrest.
THEN we find out he’s a PRN Paramedic?! So, he’s on both sides of the fence and still goes the extra mile to not only demand something he can try to obtain with a little Police work, but decides to physically restrain and arrest the charge nurse reminding him of his limitations? And not just that, but he tries to go the bully route first and threaten to “bring all the transients here” to Wubbles’ ED. Smooth move, dick. Who says that? Honestly? You’re the kind of medic that would slam 2mg of Narcan at the doors of the ED and laugh when the patient vomits all over the staff I’d wager.
The charge nurse was holding the agreement that stated what you had to do. She was on the phone with Hospital Admin reminding you of the policy and you chose the “macho” way to handle it. Exert force and ask questions later. Well, now he has lost his PRN Medic job and, thanks to the internet, his name will forever be associated with this event.
How hard would it be to work within the rules to get what you think you need? Not hard at all. It just takes not being a jerk. Wubbles did the right thing being an advocate for her patients despite how easy it would be to let Payne in to violate that trust.
I hope the greater LEO community stops spinning the “He talked to his Lieutenant who ordered she be arrested” and pushes this guy out. If this is what he does to a medical professional who pisses him off in public, on tape, imagine what he’s doing when the cameras aren’t rolling.
Payne isn’t welcome in EMS after this toddler style melt down either as far as I’m concerned. Forget a letter in your file, you’re out.