I just got wind of this video and it is rather disturbing via the Examiner. The video shows trooper Daniel Martin responding to a stolen vehicle report. He is travelling pretty fast down a two-lane road when he comes up on an ambulance. There is a car on the shoulder of the road so the ambulance passes it and then moves to the right to let the officer pass. After trooper Martin passes you can hear him castigate the ambulance driver over his radio.
After Martin arrives at the scene of the stolen vehicle there are other officers there and he is dismissed. He then proceeds to track down the ambulance and pull it over while it is still transporting the elderly patient to the hospital. Trooper Martin then decides to confront the driver of the ambulance with a threat of being arrested for not yeilding to an emergency vehicle. Maurice White, paramedic and supervisor of the ambulance, gets out of the back and attempts to confront the officer on exactly what he’s doing. You can watch what happens from there, a bunch of yelling, threats, and choking. What I didn’t see a lot of was the officer caring if someone was going to die in the back of that ambulance. To protect and serve…
And here’s the cell phone camera from the patient’s son
The Oklahoma Highway Patrol has been stonewalling attempts to get the video released to the public for two weeks, and it seems like for a good reason.
The Civil Liberties Examiner has this to say: “Consider this a test case. If you don’t see a paramedic’s life-saving responsibilities as at least as pressing as the law-enforcement duties of a police officer, there probably is no limit to the authority you’re willing to grant any government employee with a badge.”
I get cursed at and have had rude gestures thrown my way but it doesn’t entitle me to chase down, confront, assault, and obstruct with medical care of anyone. That must be a pretty sweet perk of the job description in Oklahoma.
I would think the patient’s rights trump any ticket that the officer is going to administer. And since when did an ambulance not count equally as an emergency vehicle? When I was an EMT I know the police were always our friends as you have to go into a decent amount of neighborhoods which are dangerous or get sketchy around flashing lights. People get heated over the treatment of their relatives and sometimes things get out of control. In just under three years I had 2 guns and 1 knife pulled on me during a call. One time the guy let out a warning shot into his ceiling, which got my attention pretty quick and taught me to rely on the guys with guns when the situation wasn’t safe for me.