Supervisors at the emergency contact center in Houston, Texas had Crenshanda Williams, 43, arrested after finding out the woman was hanging up on 911 calls.
The incidents occurred between October 2015 and March 2016, reports KPRC.
Williams’ records showed that she was involved with dozens of conversations that took less than 20 seconds. Some of the incidents that were recorded were shown to have disastrous results due to Williams’ negligence.
Williams has been charged with a misdemeanor for interference with an emergency phone call. If convicted, she could face a year in jail and a $4,000 fine for each count.
A few cases serve to illustrate the charges.
On March 1, 2016, Buster Pendley called 911 when his wife collapsed and was unresponsive. He recounts the call as follows: “The 911 operator answered the phone, and she said, ‘This is Crenshanda, may I help you?’ [I said] ‘Wife’s passed out I need an ambulance.’ She said ‘OK,’ and she hangs up on me.”
In another case, Williams is accused of hanging up on an emergency call from a convenience store where a robbery was in progress. A customer at the store, Hua Li, called 911 to report to report the robbery on March 12. He was purchasing lottery tickets when a gunman entered the store and shot the clerk.
Li fled the store and called 911. “They just said, ‘This is 911. How can I help you?’ I was trying to finish my sentence and we got disconnected,” Li told KPRC.
Police later discovered the operator who answered Li’s call was Williams, and that she ended the call after only a few seconds. Li called back and got a different operator, but the 51-year-old clerk, Zia Arfeen Seddiqui, was dead when police arrived.
The day after the fatal convenience store shooting, Williams received a 911 call from a security guard called to report reckless driving on Interstate 45. On that occasion, Williams hung up the phone before the guard could give his full name, according to police.
The most ridiculous part is that when Williams was being questioned by police, she told them that she “often hangs up on calls that have not been connected because she did not want to talk to anyone at that time.”