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911 log shows time lapse in Powell emergency call
Yahoo News ^ | 2/9/2012 | GENE JOHNSON and MIKE BAKER

Posted on 02/09/2012 10:04:54 AM PST by Former Fetus

Nearly eight minutes elapsed between when a social worker called 911 to report that Josh Powell's children were in danger and when sheriff's deputies were dispatched, emergency call logs show. The home was a gas-fueled inferno - with Powell and his two young boys inside - by the time officers were on their way.

Several minutes of response time was lost when the priority of the dispatch Sunday was listed as "routine" instead of "emergency." There was nothing deputies could do when they arrived 14 minutes later.


After getting it straight, the dispatcher told her someone would come, though he wasn't sure when. Moments later, the house erupted in flames.

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Extended News; News/Current Events; US: Washington
KEYWORDS: emergency911; explosion; policeresponse; powell
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To: Liz

That’s the thing that puzzles me. She asks the dispatcher if they can pull the address from the cell phone’s location. The dispatcher says it’s not possible. I’m pretty sure there’s a charge every month on my cell phone bill for exactly that service. So, either the SW had a cell phone with no GPS (hard to believe), or we’re paying for a service that isn’t as “in place” as we’re being told. It doesn’t make sense that the SW would ask for something she knew wouldn’t be possible. Or maybe the SW didn’t know she had her phone’s GPS turned off, if it’s even possible to completely shut that off... That charge has been on my cell phone bill for a long time.

21 posted on 02/09/2012 12:39:18 PM PST by Hoffer Rand (There ARE two Americas: "God's children" and the tax payers)
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To: SoldierDad

If the court is going to order supervised visitations for whatever reason, the judge should be smart enough to realize that it should be done in neutral territory that the non-custodial parent does not have any control over as a simple precaution.

That said, it probably would not have prevented this murder-suicide debacle. This murderer would have simply come up with a different plan to attack his children whether at school or the grandparents home.

It appears to me that the killer’s relatives have all been ignoring the elephant in the living room in regards to whatever dirty family secret that drove the killer’s homicidal familial control obsession. For that silence, they bear the burden of contributing to whole sorry tragedy.

22 posted on 02/09/2012 1:04:26 PM PST by Valpal1
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To: sodpoodle
First call: Moments later, the social worker called. She told the dispatcher she wanted to pull her car out of the driveway. She smelled gasoline, she said. "He's got the kids in the house, and he won't let me in. ... I rang the doorbell and everything. I begged him to let me in."

Clearly incompetent for the task at hand.

From the second call: "There's two little boys in the house. They're 5 and 7, and there's an adult man ... he blew up the house and the kids!" she said, speaking calmly but urgently. "And you think he might have done it intentionally?" the dispatcher asked.

If supervised visitation is called for, you do it in controlled facilities. Barring that, you send someone that can kick down a door and drop a hammer on a violent perp.

23 posted on 02/09/2012 1:08:12 PM PST by gundog (Help us, Nairobi-Wan're our only hope.)
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To: SoldierDad
Several times. But then she would not press charges, so eventually I learned to wait until it was over (and he was gone) and then go in and see if she needed medical help. I know it sounds insane, but I was a graduate student, freshly arrived from another country, and didn't know what else to do.

The worst part of that night was that my neighbor had a 10 year-old girl from another marriage. I looked for her everywhere (yes, my footprints and fingerprints were all over the place) and when I couldn't find her, I knocked at the door of the next apartment. The lady was scared and would not open, just asked me what did I want, and I blurted out "Wanda is dead, Ralph has killed her and I cannot find Brooke" and I heard a scream. The little girl had ran to this other neighbor's apartment and was hiding there, in fear! What a way to find out! I'll never ever forget it!

24 posted on 02/09/2012 1:22:27 PM PST by Former Fetus (Saved by grace through faith)
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To: Hoffer Rand

Again, I think the 911 center was buying time.

Probably they were searching records to see if there were other situations at that address so that L/E could be prepared.

Looks to me like Powell knew all of this——and had rigged the house to erupt as soon as the little boys got there to evade L/E.

25 posted on 02/09/2012 1:31:22 PM PST by Liz
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To: Former Fetus

Wow. That is horrible. It’s a tragedy when law enforcement and/or the courts do not respond to such situations before someone is seriously hurt or killed. There are many states in the U.S. that have domestic violence laws which require the aggressor be arrested when a victim has obvious signs of abuse, whether the victim presses charges or not. This should be the law in all 50 states (or, if you are Barack Obama, all 57 states).

26 posted on 02/09/2012 3:13:09 PM PST by SoldierDad (Proud dad of an Army Soldier who has survived 24 months of Combat deployment.)
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To: napscoordinator

I don’t blame the social worker, but I do wonder about their indoctrination.

I’ve heard her on the radio all day saying “I did what was right”. It sounds like cya in that “doing right” was following the government guidelines.

She smelled gas, she heard screams. Doing right would have been busting into the home to protect the children. She sounded like she calmly went down the checklist of her job duties.

Maybe it’s male/female thing. I don’t know. My first reaction would have been to bust back in. Would I be dead too? Maybe. Don’t know the specifics of the explosion/fire to know if there was time.

Also, the system is crap. Why was this guy even allowed visitation given the circumstances? Looks like yet another sad story where left wing bureaucrats can’t face reality.

27 posted on 02/09/2012 5:40:18 PM PST by Fledermaus (I can't fiddle so I'll just open a cold beer as I watch America burn.)
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To: SoldierDad
Sometimes a call saves someone else from being badly injured.

Once, I was working the complaint desk and a woman called and said that a man was beating a woman in the duplex next door. She said to hurry, "he's hurting her." This was before the domestic violence laws were enacted. I could have entered the call as a battery. That would have classified it as a misdemeanor and the dispatcher could have held the call for 20 minutes before dispatching it. Or I could have entered it as an ADW - Assault With a Deadly Weapon, which would have prioritized it and the dispatcher would then have 3 minutes to dispatch it. I had no information that a weapon was being used, all I had was the words "he's hurting her."

I entered it as an ADW and the dispatcher immediately put it out. As it was, one of our detectives was close by and he rolled to assist on the call. He went to the door and stepped in, and the suspect ran out the back. It turned out that there had been a rape in the area earlier in the day, and the suspect was at the duplex trying to rape another woman. If I had put the call in as a misdemeanor he would have succeeded.

28 posted on 02/11/2012 10:40:49 PM PST by Respond Code Three (Support Free Republic lest we eventually get a Republic which is not free.)
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To: Toespi

They knew he had images on his computer depicting incestuous parent/child sex.

He should not have been near those boys. Period.

That isn’t the social worker’s fault...but somebody’s head should roll.

29 posted on 02/11/2012 10:44:51 PM PST by Scotswife
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To: Former Fetus
It was very common before the domestic violence laws were enacted for officers to contact women who had been struck by their husbands. In overwhelming numbers the women refused to sign a complaint. If the injury was minor, the officer couldn't arrest because it didn't happen in his presence. Feminists complained and blamed the officers for not wanting to do anything. The officers couldn't do anything at the time because they had no authority to do anything other than to advise the people to get counseling. Of course, if the injuries were severe then the officers could could still arrest for a felony.

I made a lot of arrests for domestic violence but I never went to trial on a single one. Not one. I went to about two preliminary hearings, but no trials. I assume that in cases where the DA decided to file charges, a deal was made.

30 posted on 02/11/2012 10:52:10 PM PST by Respond Code Three (Support Free Republic lest we eventually get a Republic which is not free.)
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To: Respond Code Three

Wow. Good call.

31 posted on 02/13/2012 10:47:45 AM PST by SoldierDad (Proud dad of an Army Soldier who has survived 24 months of Combat deployment.)
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To: Respond Code Three
My dad's best friend, some years ago, when his daughter was staying with him after she'd left her abusing husband, had to, at gun point, force his daughter's ex onto the ground after he showed up late one night and attempted to break down the door. His wife called 911 and reported that the daughter's ex was there attempting to break into their home (rural location). After Jim had the guy on the ground for approximately 30 minutes, and no LE had arrived, he asked his wife to call again. When she called the second time she mentioned that Jim was pointing his gun at the guy. Law enforcement was there in less than two minutes.

Jim's daughter's ex is currently in prison in another state. The conviction was for attempted murder of his ex, Jim's daughter. Jim was visiting his daughter in that state, sleeping in his camper with his wife outside the daughter's home, when the ex broke down the front door, and began looking for his ex to kill her. Jim, armed with a semi-auto, placed the gun to the back of the guy's head, and ordered him onto the floor. Jim didn't know about the handgun the ex had on him until after LE arrived. The ex apparently voided his bladder at the point where Jim placed the gun to the back of his head. All this took place after the incident at Jim's house here in California.

The responding LE, after taking the ex into custody, asked Jim why he didn't shoot the ex. Jim simply stated that he knew how much paperwork that would generate for them. However, Jim said that if he knew about the handgun the guy had, he would have shot him instead. You should know, Jim, like my dad, was a retired Corrections Officer. The ex should have known better.

32 posted on 02/13/2012 11:02:10 AM PST by SoldierDad (Proud dad of an Army Soldier who has survived 24 months of Combat deployment.)
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To: Former Fetus

Sorry, but the caseworker mishandled the situation nd call from the beginning. Read the 911 transcript if you have any doubts. She showed absolutely no urgency. She even asked the 911 operator what she should do. Further into the call, upon smelling gasoline, her first concern was moving her car. She wasted half the call trying to figure out where she was located, had to go to her car to get the address. This simple, it should have taken less than a minute.. “my name is, I am a court appointed caseworker, two children under my care have been taken from me, I need emergency police assistance STAT.”. She had the power, authority, and responsibility to demand immediate assistance, she did not, even upon hearing the kids crying and screaming.

33 posted on 02/13/2012 11:05:48 AM PST by Toespi
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To: brent13a
Most dispatchers are very well trained. Its just that cities get 100's of thousands of calls a year and have to prioritize or hire a boat load of uniforms to answer the automatic alarms and other time consumimg bs calls.

If at the time of this call there were other emergency calls where the dispatcher determined the available police units were needed more desperately, like shots fired, assault in progress, etc then its a call he has to make.

A social worker complaining in monotone probably didnt set off a flag till the second call.

Ive been on the scene of actual motor vehicle accidents and waited on PO-leece 45 minutes, and we are an emergency vehicle!

BTW if you were to be in the dispatch/call center during a high volumn time you would be amazed at what they can handle, and very professionally.

34 posted on 02/13/2012 11:20:55 AM PST by DainBramage
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To: SoldierDad
Thanks for the kind words.

Jim did a good job of holding the guy for the police. It certainly does light a fire when the dispatcher is told that a gun in involved.

The daughter's ex should have remembered that while Jim might be a retired correctional officer, he still has that state of mind to defend someone if their life is threatened and to use deadly force if he needs to. Good for Jim!

35 posted on 02/14/2012 6:44:56 AM PST by Respond Code Three (Support Free Republic lest we eventually get a Republic which is not free.)
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