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Support for Utah nurse arrested for upholding hospital policy

OAKLAND, CA — This is Alex Wubbles — a nurse at the University of Utah hospital — telling police officers that due to hospital policy, she could not give them a sample of an unconscious patient’s blood without a warrant or the patient’s consent.

Salt Lake City police detective Jeff Payne grew impatient with Nurse Wubbels.

Wubbels was arrested and later released without charge.

The footage was taken on July 26 but was released last week.

Since its release, Detective Payne was put on paid leave by Salt Lake City police; however, he was fired from his part time job as a paramedic.

“I just feel betrayed, I feel angry. I feel a lot of things and I am still confused,” Wubbles said.

Authorities are asking the FBI for help in overseeing a criminal investigation into officers involved in the handcuffing of nurse Wubbles.

“It was alarming. Immediately after seeing the video, they started an internal affairs investigation to look into what happened. We also looked at our policies and procedures to see if maybe there was something that needed to be done,” said Sgt. Brandon Shearer.

Meanwhile, Fil-Am president of the California Nurses Association Zenei Cortez says the nurse’s union stands by Wubbles.

“When I saw the video it was very, very disturbing for me because this is a nurse who’s trying to do her job, and her job is to protect her patient and advocate for her patient,” said Zenei.

Cortez says that the California Nurses Association, as part of National Nurses United, is trying to push for a national legislation and a national standard to protect nurses and healthcare workers in the workplace.

“If you’re doing a job, you need to do it well, and you need to know what your limitations are when doing your job. And in the case of the police officer, I think he went over and beyond his capacity by perpetuating the violence on that nurse.”

Due to the incident, the University of Utah hospital has barred law enforcement from patient care areas and from direct contact with nurses.

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